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Professor Chris Hawkesworth

Isotope Geochemistry

Several diseases can be linked to inbalances in trace metals, e.g. Cu to Parkinson and Prion diseases and Cu, Zn and Fe to Alzheimers disease. The analytical techniques needed to measure Cu and Zn isotopes precisely have only been developed in the last five years.

It has been highlighted that transition metal isotopes could be used to examine processes by which metals are transported through human bodies. This implies that these isotopes could provide important insights into the pathways and controls on metals in biological substances.

Our intention is to use such knowledge to establish links between these metals and diseases.

Research keywords

  • Coninental crust
  • in situ analyses
  • isotopes and trace elements
  • nature of the geological record
  • base metal deposits
  • archaeology