What does "matrices" mean in this sentence?

This mercury analysis uses three matrices: 1) blood, 2) urine, 3) hair.

Does matrix here mean a rectangular array of numbers arranged in rows and columns?

  • 1
    I would believe that "matrix", in this sense, means the "structure" used to carry the chemicals being analyzed. In one case blood is used, in one case urine, in one case hair. The "analysis" might be, eg, gas chromatography.
    – Hot Licks
    Commented Nov 27, 2015 at 4:07

1 Answer 1


No, they're referring to a medical or clinical matrix:

A surrounding substance within which something is contained or embedded

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