Dried samples of 0.10 to 1.00 mg were sent out for elemental analyses using an ICP-MS (ELAN DRC II 6000, Perkin Elmer). Each sample was diluted in 100 μL of bi-distilled nitric acid (HNO3, Merck, PA) and heated at 90 °C for 2 h to minimize polyatomic ion interferences. The final volume of extracts was completed to 2.50 mL with Nanopure water (Milli-Q, Millipore, USA). The element concentration was determined for all samples after two readings of 5 replicates each (10 readings per sample of which the instrument discards 3 and the average obtained from the remaining). Analyses included the following elements: silver (Ag), aluminum (Al), arsenic (As), gold (Au), barium (Ba), beryllium (Be), bismuth (Bi), bromide (Br), calcium (Ca), cerium (Ce), cesium (Cs), cadmium (Cd), cobalt (Co), chromium (Cr), copper (Cu), dysprosium (Dy), europium (Eu), erbium (Er), iron (Fe), gallium (Ga), gadolinium (Gd), germanium (Ge), mercury (Hg), holmium (Ho), lanthanum (La), lithium (Li), lutetium (Lu), potassium (K), magnesium (Mg), manganese (Mn), molybdenum (Mo), sodium (Na), nickel (Ni), neodymium (Nd), niobium (Nb), praseodymium (Pr), lead (Pb), rubidium (Rb), rhenium (Re), sulfur (S), antimony (Sb), scandium (Sc), selenium (Se), silicon (Si), samarium (Sm), tin (Sn), strontium (Sr), tantalum (Ta), terbium (Tb),thorium (Th), titanium (Ti), thallium (Tl), thulium (Tm), uranium (U), vanadium (V), tungsten (W), yttrium (Y), ytterbium (Yb), zinc (Zn), and zirconium (Zr). Analytical curves were prepared using PE5 and PE29 standard multi-element stock solutions (Perkin Elmer, USA), in a 5% v/v HNO3 solution. An Rh solution (40 μg L−1 in 1% v/v HNO3) was used as an internal standard, injected online with every solution.

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