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The Use Of Particle-induced X-ray Emission (PIXE) Technique In The Biomonitoring Of Catarinense Coal Basin Ecosystems: A Review

Jairo José Zocche, Vanessa Moraes de Andrade, Ricardo Aurino Pinho, Johnny Ferraz Dias

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Brazilian coal residues contain high sulfide levels and several environmentally relevant metals and metalloids. Herein, we present a review about the use of the particle-induced X-ray emission (PIXE) technique in the analysis of chemical elements content in the biotic and abiotic compartments of Catarinense Coal Basin (CCB). The content of P, K, Ca, Fe and Zn in the soil and vegetables from coal-mining areas were found to be higher than those in the reference area. The same patterns were observed in frogs relative to the contents of P, S, K, Mn, Fe, Cu and Zn; to bats concerning the contents of P, S and Fe; and to mice fed with juice of vegetables from coal mining-areas, regarding the contents of P, K, Fe, Cu and Zn. The results suggest a possible contamination of the wild species that inhabit the coal-mined areas and that people consuming food from coal-mining areas may ingest significant amounts of chemical elements that pose a risk to health, since they contain both essential and toxic elements in a wide range of concentrations, which can do more harm than good.