Inorganic Poisons Section

General information

Three chemists are employed in the Section, of whom two are experts with PhD’s.
Biological and non-biological materials are analysed in the Section for the presence of inorganic poisons, mainly metal compounds, including heavy metals, non-metal compounds and corrosive substances.

Scope of expert opinions:

  • examination of biological material collected during autopsy or  material collected from living people in cases of suspected poisoning,
  • examination of food in cases of poisoning,
  • identification of unknown substances.

Each expert opinion comprises: a report on the qualitative and quantitative analysis of the investigated  material, and processing and interpretation of the results obtained.

Research and Development

In the Section, research is carried out in the following fields:

  • adaptation and application of new analytical methods to routine expert work and development of procedures for the analysis of biological material for trace metals (Hg, As, Pb, Cd, Pt, Cr, Ni, Ba and Tl),
  • estimation of reference concentrations of metals in non-exposed people as well as levels found in cases of poisonings.


  • atomic absorption spectrometer, with electrothermal atomisation (ETAAS) and hydride generation (HGAAS) techniques;
  • atomic absorption spectrometer with flame technique (FAAS);
  • optical emission spectrometer with inductively coupled plasma (ICP-OES);
  • microwave digestion system.

Selected publications

  1. Lech T., Sadlik J. K., Contribution to the data on copper concentration in blood and urine in patients with Wilson`s disease and in normal subjects, Biological Trace Elements Research 2007, 118, 1, 16–20.
  2. Lech T., Hydzik P., Kosowski B., Significance of copper determination in late onset of Wilson`s disease, Clinical Toxicology 2007, 45, 6, 688–694.
  3. Sadlik J. K., A chemico-toxicological expert report concerning metallic mercury, Problems of Forensic Sciences 2007, LXX, 236−244.
  4. Sadlik J. K., Zaucha M., ICP-OES in analysis of inorganic poisons in biological materials, Problems of Forensic Sciences 2008, 76, 412–419.
  5. Lech T., Lachowicz T., Application of ICP-OES to multielement analysis of biological material in inorganic forensic toxicology, Problems of Forensic Sciences 2009, 77, 33–47.
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