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Multielemental Analysis of Food and Agricultural Matrixes by Inductively Coupled Plasma-Mass Spectrometry

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The suitability of quadrupole inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) for multielemental analysis of food following microwave closed vessel digestion of samples was evaluated in relation to analytical challenges presented by some major food and agricultural matrixes. Fifteen key analytes (Al, As, Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Fe, Mn, Mo, Ni, Pb, Se, Sn, V, Zn) were determined in 9 reference materials representative of 3 major groups of staple foods (cereals, seafood, and meat). For all measurements, the method of external calibration was used and Rh was selected as internal standard. Matrix-induced interferences were evaluated for each material, and suitable methods to overcome them were applied. Spectral interferences caused by C, Cl, and Ca content of digestates were quantitated and corrected by entering a simple system of mathematical correction equations into the instrument software before each analytical run. Full mastering of interferences together with adoption of a series of measures to control the reliability of analytical measurements produced accurate results for all the analytes. A standard analytical protocol is outlined for the benefit of both research and routine high-throughput laboratories that perform ICP-MS analyses of food.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Istituto Superiore di Sanità, Laboratorio Alimenti, Viale Regina Elena 299, 00161 Rome, Italy.

Publication date: 2002-01-01

More about this publication?
  • The Journal of AOAC INTERNATIONAL publishes refereed papers and reviews in the fields of chemical, biological and toxicological analytical chemistry for the purpose of showcasing the most precise, accurate and sensitive methods for analysis of foods, food additives, supplements and contaminants, cosmetics, drugs, toxins, hazardous substances, pesticides, feeds, fertilizers and the environment available at that point in time. The scope of the Journal includes unpublished original research describing new analytical methods, techniques and applications; improved approaches to sampling, both in the field and the laboratory; better methods of preparing samples for analysis; collaborative studies substantiating the performance of a given method; statistical techniques for evaluating data. The Journal will also publish other articles of general interest to its audience, e.g., technical communications; cautionary notes; comments on techniques, apparatus, and reagents.
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