Potential of short-column liquid chromatography with tandem mass spectrometric detection for the rapid study of pesticide degradation
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The applicability of solid-phase extraction-LC using two short columns (SPE-LC) and/or single-short-column liquid chromatography (SSC) combined on-line with tandem mass spectrometry (MS) was demonstrated for the rapid study of pesticide degradation. A fast analytical procedure was developed to provide preliminary information concerning experimental conditions, approximate rates of degradation and identity of the degradation products. Surface water samples were spiked at relevant concentration levels with well-known microcontaminants and photolysis was used to transform parent compounds into their degradation products. In general, the strategy was as follows: at 30-min intervals 10-mL samples were on-line enriched, separated by short-column LC and recorded in full-scan MS to obtain information on the disappearance of the parent compound and the appearance of breakdown products. To obtain structural information, product-ion spectra of selected compounds appearing in the full-scan MS chromatogram were recorded; this enabled the identification of several degradation products. Total analysis time of enrichment/separation and detection was about 10–15 min.
Key WordsColumn liquid chromatography Short-Column LC Environmental water samples MS-MS detection Pesticide degradation
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