Letter | Published:

Evidence for Organic Complexed Copper in Sea Water

Naturevolume 214pages377378 (1967) | Download Citation



COPPER has probably been the most extensively investigated trace metal in sea water, yet little is known of the contributing chemical forms. Atkins1 used sodium diethyldithiocarbamate to complex the ionic or more easily chelated copper and more recent investigators have continued to use this method2 or have substituted dithizone or some other chelating agent. The complexed copper may later be extracted into a suitable organic solvent such as chloroform or carbon tetrachloride and determined colorimetrically. The use of these procedures has meant that the majority of results reported in the literature refer only to the readily chelated, divalent fraction of copper.

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  1. 1

    Atkins, W. R. G., J. Mar. Biol. Assoc. U.K., 18, 193 (1932).

  2. 2

    Loveridge, B. A., Milner, G. W. P., Barret, G. A., Thomas, A., and Henry, W. M., U.K.A.E.A. Rep. AERE–R 3323 (1960).

  3. 3

    Buglio, B., Rona, E., and Hood, D. W., Ann. Rep. AEC-Con. No. At-(40-1)-2799, Texas A and M Rep. 61–19A (1961).

  4. 4

    Corcoran, E. F., and Alexander, J. E., Bull. Mar. Sci. Gulf and Carib., 14, 594 (1964).

  5. 5

    Slowey, J. F., and Hood, D. W., Ann. Rep. AEC-Con. No. At-(40-1)-2799, Texas A and M Rep. 66-2F (1966).

  6. 6

    Hirsch, J., and Ahrens, jun., E. H., J. Biol. Chem., 233, 311 (1958).

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    Present address: Jet Research Corp., Arlington, Texas


  1. Texas A and M University, College Station, Texas

    •  & LELA M. JEFFREY
  2. University of Alaska, College, Alaska

    • D. W. HOOD


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