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Evaluation of Headspace Solid-Phase Microextraction for Analysis of Phosphine Residues in Wheat

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In headspace (HS) analysis, a fumigant is released from a commodity into a gas-tight container by grinding, heating, or microwaves. A new technique uses HS-solid-phase microextraction (SPME) for additional preconcentration of fumigant. HS-SPME was tested for detection of phosphine (PH3), chosen for examination because of its wide use on stored commodities. PH3 was applied to 50 g wheat in separate 250 mL sealed flasks, which were equipped either with a septum for conventional HS analysis or with one of four HS-SPME fibers [100 μm polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS), 85 μm carboxen (CAR)/PDMS, 75 μm CAR/PDMS, and 65 μm PDMS/divinylbenzene (DVB)]. The wheat was heated at 45°C for 20 min. In conventional HS analysis, a gaseous aliquot (80 μL) was taken from the HS and injected into the GC instrument. In the HS-SPME procedure, the fiber was removed from the HS and exposed in the heated injection port of the GC instrument. In all cases, PH3 was determined under the same chromatographic conditions with a GC pulsed flame photometric detector. In a comparison of the efficacy of the fibers, the bipolar fibers (CAR/PDMS and PDMS/DVB) contained more PH3 than the aliquot in the conventional HS analysis; larger size bipolar fibers extracted PH3 more efficiently than smaller fibers (e.g., 85 > 75 > 65 μm). The nonpolar fiber (PDMS) contained no PH3. Four fortification levels of PH3 on wheat were tested: 0.01, 0.05, 0.1, and 0.3 μg/g. The response of each bipolar fiber increased with the fortification levels, but the conventional HS analysis detected no fumigant at the lowest fortification level of 0.01 mg/g. Under the conditions of the validation study, the LOD was in the range of 0.005–0.01 ng PH3/g wheat.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2012-03-01

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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