Mass Spectrometry in the Study of Pesticides: An Introduction
During the preceding ten years, mass spectrometry has enjoyed a phenomenal growth as a technique which provides identification and elucidation of structure of biologically active compounds. Biochemical applications have proliferated intensely and it is rare to read a technical publication dealing with a study of the metabolism or degradation of biologically significant compounds without a reference to the use of mass spectrometry in the characterization of compounds of unknown structure. To a similar extent, mass spectrometry has been increasingly applied in the area of pesticide chemistry as an analytical technique for the confirmation of pesticide residues in environmental substrates and the characterization of intact and degraded residues of unknown structure. From the earliest recognition of thelutility of this valuable technique in evaluating metabolic pathways , to the most recent sophisticated application to thezenvironmental monitoring of 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-pdioxin , mass spectrometry has continually proven to be an indispensable tool in solving the wide variety of problems presented by research and development activity in pesticide chemistry.
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