Trace Metals Unit

The Trace Metals Unit provides a wide range of clinical and environmental laboratory testing for healthier people and communities through partnerships, communication, and technical innovation. With approximately 1,500 square feet, the laboratory has a cleanroom in addition to designated environmental and clinical testing areas.  With the use of their cleanroom the laboratory is able to test for low level metals using either their inductively coupled plasma with dynamic reaction cell mass spectrometry (ICP-DRC-MS) or their liquid chromatography inductively coupled mass spectrometry (LC-ICP-MS) technologies.    Similarly, the laboratory performs environmental analysis using either a microwave or hot block digestion in conjunction with inductively coupled plasma atomic emission spectrometry (ICP-AES) or ICP-MS technologies.  Lastly, the laboratory has the ability to bypass a digestion process and place a sample directly on the instrument for analysis by using their thermal decomposition/atomic absorption spectrophotometry (TD/AA) instrumentation.

The Trace Metals Unit works in conjunction with the Lead Hazard Remediation and Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Programs to detect lead hazards in housing and treat lead poisoned children in Michigan.  Second, the Trace Metals Unit works alongside the MDHHS Bureau of Laboratories (BOL) Analytical Chemistry Section identifying mercury levels in fish to generate the eat safe fish advisory for the State of Michigan.  Finally, the Trace Metals Unit performs Bio-Monitoring testing and serves as a surge capacity laboratory, identified as such by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), for Chemical Terrorism specimens. 

Staff Overview:

The Trace Metals Unit is comprised of a Unit Manager; ELLAP Technical Manager; ELLAP QA Manager; and 5 Analysts which have over 95 years of combined experience in clinical and environmental laboratory practices.  With the wide range of testing performed in the laboratory the staff has extensive experience in multi-element analysis using a wide range of matrices including speciation, method development and validation, and written documentation and implementation. Along with having technical staff specialists for operating and maintaining the laboratory's advanced instrumentation: 3 ICP-MS's; an ICP-AES; and 2 TD/AA's, the laboratory's technical and quality assurance managers assure adherence to AIHA-LAP, LCC's regulatory requirements while the section manager assures adherence to the CAP and CLIA'88 standards.