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Mineralogy affects geoavailability, bioaccessibility and bioavailability of zinc

Molina, Ramon M., Schaider, Laurel A., Donaghey, Thomas C., Shine, James P., Brain, Joseph D.
Environmental pollution 2013 v.182 pp. 217-224
bioavailability, exposure assessment, gastric juice, lead, pH, rats, remediation, smithsonite, wastes, zinc
We correlated mineralogical and particle characteristics of Zn-containing particles with Zn geoavailability, bioaccessibility, and bioavailability following gavage and intranasal (IN) administration in rats. We compared samples of Zn/Pb mine waste and five pulverized pure-phase Zn minerals (<38 μm). Particles were neutron-activated to produce radioactive 65Zn. We assessed geoavailability using sequential extractions and bioaccessibility using in vitro extraction tests simulating various pH and biological conditions. Zn in vivo bioavailability and in vitro bioaccessibility decreased as follows: mine waste > hydrozincite > hemimorphite > zincite ≈ smithsonite >> sphalerite. We found significant correlations among geoavailability, bioaccessibility and bioavailability. In particular, Zn bioavailability post-gavage and post-IN was significantly correlated with bioaccessibility in simulated phagolysosomal fluid and gastric fluid. These data indicate that solid phase speciation influences biological uptake of Zn and that in vitro tests can be used to predict Zn bioavailability in exposure assessment and effective remediation design.