Pilot Studies for in Vivo Bone Aluminum Measurements
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Excess aluminum has been linked to such diseases as dialysis encephalopathy syndrome and osteodystrophy, in renal dialysis patients. Though the causality relation has not yet been confirmed, aluminum has also been associated with Alzheimer's disease.
Aluminum is thought to be stored in bones, and a measure of its deposition should correlate with its total bioaccumulation. To date, only bone biopsies and desferrioxamine tests are available for such measurements. Neutron activation analysis (NAA) has been studied as a non-invasive technique for measuring bone aluminum. Two neutron beam ports from the McMaster nuclear reactor and the KN accelerator have been compared as possible thermal neutron sources. Resin-based phantoms, physiologically resembling a hand, were irradiated using the reactor based neutron source. From the results, a minimum detection limit (MDL) of aluminum in bone was obtained. An Andersson-Braun remmeter measured the dose delivered to the phantoms, due to the radiation exposure. The hand dose equivalent combined with the MDL, in this study, are compared to the results of previous NAA studies. The goal of this study is to measure low aluminum stores In Vivo, while delivering a low dose with respect to natural background levels.
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