A race I’m developing has grey skin due to silver buildup similar to Argyria. I was wondering if Argyria affects the blood or bone color.
It could. First you need to clarify what is important to your story and what is a consequence of a current explanation of that. So, what is a MUST in your story?
- The race has grey skin. The why can change. As in "their skin color was associated with both strength and purity, as it reassembles silver".
- The race has biological use of silver. The how can change. As in "they were predated by humans to extract their silver".
- The race has grey skin and biological use of silver, no need to be related.
- The race must have grey skin as a consequence of silver.
In law 3 you also need to clarify: 4.a) Use of silver and grey skin are not beneficial traits per se, but a indirect consequence (example: is part of their diet). 4.b) Use of silver is a biological need.
In every scenario your get a different answer. Note that: • The color of an element when bond to others, and in its elemental state do not necessarily matches. • Usually, in order to be useful, elements are combined in different ways, and not in their elemental state (oxidation state: 0). Example: the iron on the blood is on +2 state. • As stated by the other answer, silver is not a good alternative to iron on blood. Also, it's very very rare in comparison to iron, so "evolution favored silver because it was more abundant" is not convincing. • On argyria, the color is because of light induced silver reduction. The silver is on 1+ oxidation state binded to something, and by action of light is reduced to elemental (metallic) state, of 0. • If redox occurs uncontrolled can cause grate damage, as in argyria. But, if it's controlled (in some specialized cell organell) it could have some advantage. • In this case, I can imagine at least two (which can concur): ° The redox by light can facilitate some reactions, as in humans helps to produce D vitamin). ° The silver ion (1+) has anti microbe action.
Probably not. The colour of blood is red because of the iron containing compound haemoglobin present in RBCs (which constitute about 55% of our blood). There is no precedent for grey blood or bone as far as I know. Silver blood would have to be based on an entirely new kind of biochemistry, though I heavily doubt that. Silver is a much heavier element than iron and much less reactive. It couldn't be part of a compound that delivers oxygen so quickly or is even capable of bonding to oxygen so readily. If you say their blood turns grey because of a high concentration of a silver compound, it is extremely improbable as the organism would die much before that happens.