Qualitative aspects and validation of a screening method for pesticides in vegetables and fruits based on liquid chromatography coupled to full scan high resolution (Orbitrap) mass spectrometry

J.G.J. Mol, P. Zomer, A. de Koning

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99 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The analytical capabilities of liquid chromatography with single-stage high-resolution mass spectrometry have been investigated with emphasis on qualitative aspects related to selective detection during screening and to identification. The study involved 21 different vegetable and fruit commodities, a screening database of 556 pesticides for evaluation of false positives, and a test set of 130 pesticides spiked to the commodities at 0.01, 0.05, and 0.20 mg/kg for evaluation of false negatives. The final method involved a QuEChERS-based sample preparation (without dSPE clean up) and full scan acquisition using alternating scan events without/with fragmentation, at a resolving power of 50,000. Analyte detection was based on extraction of the exact mass (±5 ppm) of the major adduct ion at the database retention time ±30 s and the presence of a second diagnostic ion. Various options for the additional ion were investigated and compared (other adduct ions, M¿+¿1 or M¿+¿2 isotopes, fragments). The two-ion approach for selective detection of the pesticides in the full scan data was compared with two alternative approaches based on response thresholds. Using the two-ion approach, the number of false positives out of 11,676 pesticide/commodity combinations targeted was 36 (0.3 %). The percentage of false negatives, assessed for 2,730 pesticide/commodity combinations, was 13 %, 3 %, and 1 % at the 0.01-, 0.05-, and 0.20-mg/kg level, respectively (slightly higher with fully automated detection). Following the SANCO/12495/2011 protocol for validation of screening methods, the screening detection limit was determined for 130 pesticides and found to be 0.01, 0.05, and =0.20 mg/kg for 86, 30, and 14 pesticides, respectively. For the detected pesticides in the spiked samples, the ability for unambiguous identification according to EU criteria was evaluated. A proposal for adaption of the criteria was made.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2891-2908
JournalAnalytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry
Volume403
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2012

Keywords

  • accurate-mass
  • veterinary drugs
  • emerging contaminants
  • residue analysis
  • doping control
  • plant toxins
  • uplc-tof
  • food
  • ms
  • library

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