Determination of perfluorinated alkyl acid concentrations in human serum and milk standard reference materials
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Standard Reference Materials (SRMs) are certified reference materials produced by the National Institute of Standards and Technology that are homogeneous materials well characterized with values for specified properties, such as environmental contaminant concentrations. They can be used to validate measurement methods and are critical in improving data quality. Disagreements in perfluorinated alkyl acid (PFAA) concentrations measured in environmental matrices during past interlaboratory comparisons emphasized the need for SRMs with values assigned for PFAAs. We performed a new interlaboratory comparison among six laboratories and provided, for the first time, value assignment of PFAAs in SRMs. Concentrations for perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS), perfluorooctanoate (PFOA), and other PFAAs in two human serum and two human milk SRMs are reported. PFAA concentration measurements agreed for serum SRM 1957 using different analytical methods in six laboratories and for milk SRM 1954 in three laboratories. The interlaboratory relative standard deviation for PFOS in SRM 1957 was 7%, which is an improvement over past interlaboratory studies. Matrix interferences are discussed, as well as temporal trends and the percentage of branched vs. linear isomers. The concentrations in these SRMs are similar to the present-day average concentrations measured in human serum and milk, resulting in representative and useful control materials for PFAA human monitoring studies.