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Analytical Chemistry

Minerals in Medicine Exhibition

NIH, Smithsonian collaborate to highlight health applications of minerals

by Andrea Widener
September 26, 2016 | APPEARED IN VOLUME 94, ISSUE 38

Credit: NIH Clinical Center

The Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History has teamed up with the National Institutes of Health Clinical Center to highlight the important connection between minerals and human health. The 40 items on display at the Clinical Center were chosen from the museum’s collection by NIH physicians and Smithsonian geologists. One example is this cinnabar with quartz from Kyrgyzstan. The bright red cinnabar, or mercury sulfide (HgS), has been used in producing glass thermometers and tooth fillings.

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