Activation Analysis of Soluble and Fixed Sodium in Mammalian Hair

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Science  03 Feb 1967:
Vol. 155, Issue 3762, pp. 588-589
DOI: 10.1126/science.155.3762.588


Antelope hair was soaked in sodium-22 to simulate external contamination and then systematically washed to remove all traces of the sodium; progress of the wash was followed by gamma-ray spectrometry. Hair was then activated by neutron bombardment which showed sodium still present as sodium-24. It is concluded that a fraction of sodium in hair can be readily washed away with water and that a second fraction is held in the hair in such a manner that extended washing does not remove it. This suggests that sodium in two states may be associated with hair, one as an external contaminant and the other as a more nearly integral part of the hair.