Simultaneous determination of selected endocrine disrupters (pesticides, phenols and phthalates) in water by in-field solid-phase extraction (SPE) using the prototype PROFEXS followed by on-line SPE (PROSPEKT) and analysis by liquid chromatography-atmospheric pressure chemical ionisation-mass spectrometry.

Research paper by P P López-Roldán, M J MJ López de Alda, D D Barceló

Indexed on: 19 Sep '03Published on: 19 Sep '03Published in: Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry


In this study, a new procedure, based on on-line solid-phase extraction (SPE) and analysis by liquid-chromatography-atmospheric pressure chemical ionization-mass spectrometry (LC-APCI-MS), has been developed for the simultaneous, multianalyte determination of 21 selected pesticides, phenols and phthalates in water. SPE was carried out on polymeric PLRP-s cartridges by percolating 20 mL-samples. For sample preconcentration, the performance of a prototype programmable field extraction system (PROFEXS) was evaluated against the commercial laboratory bench Prospekt system used for method development. The Profexs is designed for the automated on-site sampling, SPE preconcentration, and storage of up to 16 samples in SPE cartridges. These cartridges are further eluted and on-line analyzed with the Prospekt coupled to the chromatographic system. In the optimized method, where completely on-line SPE-LC-MS analysis of the samples is carried out with the Prospekt in the laboratory, detection limits lower than 100 ng/L, and satisfactory precision (relative standard deviations <25%) and accuracies (recovery percentages >75%) were obtained for most investigated compounds from the analysis of spiked Milli-Q water. The extraction efficiency achieved with the Profexs was comparable to that of the Prospekt for most compounds and somewhat lower for the most apolar analytes, probably due to adsorption on the pump filters. The completely on-line optimized method was applied to the analysis of surface water, ground water and drinking water from a waterworks in Barcelona. Some pesticides and phenols were found in both surface water and groundwater at ng/L or microg/L levels, but not in the final drinking water. Di(2-ethylhexyl)phthalate (DEHP) was present in all samples investigated, including blanks. To the author's knowledge, this is the first work describing the application of a fully automated on-line SPE-LC-MS method for the simultaneous analysis of pesticides, phenols, and phthalates in water, and the second one that examines the possibilities of the prototype Profexs for automated on-site SPE preconcentration of organic pollutants from water samples.