Free Access
Volume 26, Number 5, June 1998
Microcolumn separation techniques developing in Japan
Page(s) 210 - 214
Section Original articles
Analusis 26, 210-214 (1998)
DOI: 10.1051/analusis:1998136

Determination of macrominerals and trace elements in the alga Spirulina platensis

L. Campanella1, G. Crescentini1, P. Avino1 and A. Moauro2

1  Department of Chemistry, University of Rome "La Sapienza", Piazzale Aldo Moro 5, 00185, Rome, Italy
2  National Agency for New Technologies, Energy and the Environment (ENEA), Casaccia Center, via Anguillarese 301, 00060, Rome, Italy

The alga Spirulina, in particular Spirulina platensis, an ubiquitous component of sea and ocean with high nutritional content, is considered a potential alimentary source for third world countries affected by heavy famine problems. On other side, Spirulina-based products are nowadays commonly commercialized and recommended by suppliers as health food, diet pills, vitamins supplement etc.. However, a careful nutritional and toxicological evaluation of these products is necessary, since algae show bioaccumulation properties towards heavy metals. In this frame, samples of commercial and natural Spirulina platensis of Cuban origin, have been characterized for their macromineral and trace elements content. Measurements have been carried out by INAA and ICP-AES employing standard reference materials. The use of two techniques allowed the determination of a wider spectrum of elements and in some cases, the cross-checking of the data obtained. The toxic heavy metals levels found in both products are such that they do not constitute, on the basis of the recommended daily doses a health hazard for consumers.

Key words: Macrominerals / trace elements / INAA / ICP-AES.

© EDP Sciences, Wiley-VCH 1998