2005 / 05
Dear Reader !

Welcome to the May edition of the Speciation Newsletter provided by the European Virtual Institute for Speciation  Analysis (EVISA).

This month and the next one are really hot with respect to events. It would be unfair to name only few, but from the list you can see that different elements and topic such as Environmental Chemistry, Geochemistry, Biology and Medicine are covered. For more details see our agenda below.  

This month's hot topic seems to be arsenic. While arsenic in the drinking water of Bangladesh and West Bengal Province of India is called "The biggest calamity of the world" you will soon recognize that arsenic is an issue in other regions of the world too. Even more problematic, while the problem in Bangladesh is of geological nature, the arsenic issues discussed here are man-made. Since the toxicity of arsenic depends heavily on the species present, meaningfull risk assessment can only be done by doing speciation analysis.

We hope that our newsletter will attract your interest, and would be happy to receive your suggestions, comments or criticism.


EVISA is keeping you updated  with what is going on in speciation analysis. In this section you will find news about the most current research results, about trends, legal issues and informations from manufacturers in the field of speciation analysis.

Arsenic in Pressure-Treated Lumber - Enhancing Childrens Cancer Risks
An estimated 70 million homes across the USA claim outdoor wooden playsets, decks, and other structures that leach arsenic, sticking to children's skin and clothing at every touch. This results in substantial cancer risks faced by children who regularly play on CCA-treated wood.

Use of organoarsenicals as pesticides may lead to contamination of soils and groundwater with toxic arsenic species
The impact of extensively used arsenic-containing herbicides such as monosodium methanearsonate (MSMA) on groundwater beneath golf courses has become a topic of interest. Although the currently used organoarsenicals are considered to be less toxic, their application into the environment may produce the more toxic inorganic arsenicals.

New results about toxicity of thimerosal
Thimerosal, an organomercury compound which has been used since the 1930's as a preservative in vaccines is much faster cleared from the body than methylmercury, mainly taken up from contaminated fish. This is the result of a study recently published by a group of US researchers in Environmental Health Perspectives.

Conflict raised in chicken arsenic debate
A debate over potential hazards of arsenic-fed chickens has erupted between scientific experts. Bruce Bernard, a toxicologist from Cambridge, accused his colleague Ellen K. Silbergeld from the John Hopkins University, for having based her criticism on the use of arsenic compounds in chicken feed-supplements on wrong data.


With a list of about 50 entries EVISA is informing you about interesting events and keeps you updated with their deadlines. By consulting our list of deadlines you won't miss the opportunity for early registration at reduced fee or the chance to submit your contribution in time.

more infos...

Mercury, Sources, Measurements, Cycles, and Effects
Location: Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
Date: 14.05.2005 - 15.05.2005

1st International Workshop on Antimony in the Environment
Location: Heidelberg, Germany
Date: 16.05.2005 - 19.05.2005

15th Annual Goldschmidt Conference
Location: Moscow, Idaho, USA,
Date: 20.05.2005 - 25.05.2005

EMAS 2005
Location: Florence, Italy
Date: 22.05.2005 - 26.05.2005

5th Mediterranean Basin Conference on Analytical Chemistry
Location: Silvi Marina, Teramo, Italy
Date: 24.05.2005 - 28.05.2005

XIII Int. Conf. on Heavy Metals in the Environment
Location: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Date: 05.06.2005 - 09.06.2005

Location: Loen, Norway
Date: 12.06.2005 - 16.06.2005

TEMA-12: Scientific developments, Novel Applications and Progress into the 21st Century.
Location: University of Ulster, Coleraine, Northern Ireland
Date: 19.06.2005 - 23.06.2005


EVISA is supporting the field with educational and training activities meant to improve in the medium- and long-term the knowledge and know-how of users. Well known scientists working in the field are giving the lectures as well as transferring the know-how during the hands-on part of the training courses.
For learning about EVISA's current training activities please consult the following list of events that also provides more specific information and details for registration. Since the number of places in these courses is rather limited, early registration is recommended !

Arsenic speciation in foodstuffs and water in relation to legislative requirements
Location: The Danish Institute for Food and Veterinary Research, Søborg, Denmark
Date: 12.09.2005 - 13.09.2005

Speciation analysis applied to environmental issues
Location: Pau / France
Date: 12.09.2005 - 15.09.2005

Fundamentals of coupling techniques in speciation analysis
Location: Pau, France
Date: 19.10.2005 - 20.10.2005

Organic mass spectrometry in speciation analysis
Location: Pau / France
Date: 21.10.2005 - 21.10.2005

Selenium speciation in foods and food supplements
Location: The Danish Institute for Food and Veterinary Research, Søborg, Denmark
Date: 14.11.2005 - 15.11.2005

Speciation analysis and food security
Location: Pau, France
Date: 24.11.2005 - 25.11.2005

Speciation analysis applied to industrial issues: Waste management, Semi-conductors, Petroleum products, Car and electroplating industries, Cement industries, Mining industries
Location: Pau, France
Date: 05.12.2005 - 08.12.2005

Accuracy and quality assurance in speciation analysis by isotope dilution mass spectrometry
Location: Pau, France
Date: 23.02.2006 - 24.02.2006


EVISA provides information about open positions for Ph.D. students, PostDocs and permanent staff in the field of speciation. Looking to fill a vacancy or needing a new career challenge? Either way this service is FREE. If you would like to post an open position here, please contact us at info@speciation.net !


Royal Veterinary and Agricultural University, Copenhagen,
The Royal Veterinary and Agricultural University, Copenhagen, Denmark is currently interested in applications from talented post-graduate students who would like to qualify for a PhD study in the interface between analytical chemistry and plant biology using HPLC-ICP-MS and other techniques to study metal speciation in plants and in the rhizosphere.


Department of Chemistry at Clemson University
A postdoctoral position is being filled through the Department of Chemistry at Clemson University and its Institute for Nutraceutical Research. This Postdoctoral Fellowship is funded by Gaia Herbs for the purpose of developing analytical methodologies to advance the science of heavy metals (and metals in general) as they apply to herbal dietary supplements. The position exists in the laboratory of Professor R. Kenneth Marcus and will focus in the further development of comprehensive metals speciation methods involving HPLC separations and particle beam-glow discharge mass spectrometry.

USGS Mendenhall: Menlo Park, CA
Characterization of Microbial Communities Involved in Methylmercury Cycling at Historic Hg and Au Mining-Impacted Sites

The historic mercury (Hg) and gold (Au) mining operations in California produced a great deal of wealth, but also produced waste material (e.g., tailings, calcines, unprocessed ore, and waste rock) that still pose physical and chemical hazards. The greatest of these may well be the chemical hazard of Hg itself, but the toxicity, mobility, and bioavailability of Hg depend on its chemical form (i.e., species). Methylmercury (CH3Hg+) is the form most detrimental to the environment, because it is a potent neurotoxin that is readily bioaccumulated and biomagnified in aquatic food webs. Toxic effects are primarily manifested in the developing embryos of organisms at higher trophic levels, particularly those organisms for which fish constitutes a large portion of the diet.

Isotope Geochemistry/Hg Biogeochemistry, University of Michigan
Research positions are available in the area of isotope geochemistry and/or Hg biogeochemistry at the Postdoctoral Fellow or Research Faculty level. The successful candidate(s) will conduct biogeochemical research utilizing the single and multi-collector ICP-MS and/or Hg analysis laboratories. Expertise in ICP-MS isotopic analysis, and/or Hg biogeochemistry is highly desirable.

CABE, University of Geneve, Switzerland
Positions for studying ENVIRONMENTAL SENSORS AND PROBES AND THEIR APPLICATIONS at the Department of Inorganic, Analytical and Applied Chemistry of the University.


Frontier GeoSciences, Inc.: Quality Assurance Officer
Frontier GeoSciences, Inc. a progressive environmental research and specialty inorganic analytical lab in Seattle is searching for a Quality Assurance Officer. Frontier's areas of expertise include ultra-trace metals analysis and metal(loid) speciation (primarily for Hg, As, Se, Cr, and Sb). Candidates should be extremely knowledgeable about trace metals analysis and have several years' experience at an inorganic lab. Strongly positioned for growth in 2005, Frontier is looking for a proven, innovative leader to join our team.


University Graz: Assistant Professor
A position as Assistant Professor in Analytical Chemistry within the Institute of Chemistry at Karl-Franzens University Graz (Austria) will be available from June 2005. The position is for 6 years.

USDA: Research Nutritionist (Biochemistry) at Grand Forks , ND
The position is located at the Grand Forks Human Nutrition Research Center , Grand Forks ,ND. The incumbent will participate in studies of selenium metabolism, including the chemical speciation and transport of food selenium compounds and stable isotopic tracers in animal models, human subjects and cell culture models.

Faculty Position in Analytical Geochemistry
The Department of Earth Sciences at Memorial University of Newfoundland invites applications for a tenure-track faculty position in Analytical Geochemistry at the rank of Assistant or Associate Professor. The successful candidate will join a team of faculty and research staff developing multicollector-magnetic sector-ICPMS (with laser ablation capabilities), ion microprobe and scanning electron microscope instruments in the new Inco Innovation Centre at the St. John's campus.


EVISA's directory of scientist is a versatile tool to facilitate contact with scientists in the field of speciation and related sciences. The directory is fully searchable for names, addresses, research topics etc.  You should bookmark this directory as an always up-to-date address book. (In order to hinder SPAM robots for collecting the E-mail accounts, we hide them in a special format).

More than 200 active scientists in the field of speciation analysis already joined the directory. Join this great directory that is extensively linked to all tpye of other information on this site, such as homepages, conferences and literature.

If your entry is still missing in this directory, please contact us at info@speciation.net.


EVISA'S discussion forum provides an open room to talk, to reach others with similar interests, and to find answers to your burning questions. goto forum


EVISA provides an easy access to external information. Our database contains more than 700 links to relevant information from numerous top scientific resources spread over the whole Web. The database is searchable both via full-text and categories such as elements, type of species and type of information. We are permanently updating our links section. If your web site is missing here, please e-mail your link information to links@speciation.net.


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Copyright 2005 EVISA 
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No responsibility is assumed by the publisher for any injury and/or damage to persons or property as a matter of products liability, negligence or otherwise, or from any use or operation of any methods, products, instructions or ideas contained in the material herein.The authors are solely responsible for the information provided in the present poster. The Newsletter represents only the opinion of the authors and does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the European Community. The European Community is not responsible for any use that might be made of the information provided.