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Separations, Volume 6, Issue 4 (December 2019) – 13 articles

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Cover Story (view full-size image) The fishing industry produces large amounts of wastes in fish markets and in processing industries, [...] Read more.
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Open AccessReview
Applications of Hollow-Fiber and Related Microextraction Techniques for the Determination of Pesticides in Environmental and Food Samples—A Mini Review
Separations 2019, 6(4), 57; https://doi.org/10.3390/separations6040057 - 09 Dec 2019
Viewed by 276
Abstract
Pesticides represent one of the most important groups of analytes in environmental analysis. Moreover, their levels are very frequently determined in food and beverages due to the concern over their possible adverse health effects. Their concentration in samples is usually very low; thus, [...] Read more.
Pesticides represent one of the most important groups of analytes in environmental analysis. Moreover, their levels are very frequently determined in food and beverages due to the concern over their possible adverse health effects. Their concentration in samples is usually very low; thus, they have to be preconcentrated. Conventional solvent and solid-phase extractions are mainly used for this purpose, but miniaturized approaches are also being applied more and more often. The present review covers solvent microextractions that use a semi-permeable membrane barrier between the sample and the solvent. The main representatives of this approach are hollow-fiber microextraction (HFME), solvent bar microextraction (SBME), electromembrane extraction (EME), and different variations of those, such as combinations with other sorbent or solvent microextractions, electromigration, etc. The relevant research from the last decade, dealing with the application of these microextractions to the isolation of pesticides from various environmental and food samples, is critically discussed with emphasis on their strengths and weak points. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Novel Sample Preparation Techniques)
Open AccessReview
Materials for Solid-Phase Extraction of Organic Compounds
Separations 2019, 6(4), 56; https://doi.org/10.3390/separations6040056 - 06 Dec 2019
Viewed by 345
Abstract
This review provides an overview of the most recent developments involving materials for solid-phase extraction applied to determine organic contaminants. It mainly concerns polymer-based sorbents that include high-capacity, as well as selective sorbents, inorganic-based sorbents that include those prepared using sol-gel technology along [...] Read more.
This review provides an overview of the most recent developments involving materials for solid-phase extraction applied to determine organic contaminants. It mainly concerns polymer-based sorbents that include high-capacity, as well as selective sorbents, inorganic-based sorbents that include those prepared using sol-gel technology along with structured porous materials based on inorganic species, and carbon nanomaterials, such as graphene and carbon nanotubes. Different types of magnetic nanoparticles coated with these materials are also reviewed. Such materials, together with their main morphological and chemical features, are described, as are some representative examples of their application as solid-phase extraction materials to extract organic compounds from different types of samples, including environmental water, biological fluids, and food. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Novel Sample Preparation Techniques)
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Open AccessCommunication
Development and Testing of a 4-Columns Periodic Counter-Current Chromatography System Based on Membrane Adsorbers
Separations 2019, 6(4), 55; https://doi.org/10.3390/separations6040055 - 22 Nov 2019
Viewed by 368
Abstract
Continuous chromatography can surmount the disadvantages of batch chromatography like low productivities and extensive usage of consumables. In this work, a 4-column continuous chromatographic system based on the principle of periodic counter-current chromatography (PCCC) was developed and tested with a model protein mixture [...] Read more.
Continuous chromatography can surmount the disadvantages of batch chromatography like low productivities and extensive usage of consumables. In this work, a 4-column continuous chromatographic system based on the principle of periodic counter-current chromatography (PCCC) was developed and tested with a model protein mixture of BSA and lysozyme. The PCCC system was specially designed for membrane adsorbers as an alternative to conventional columns to facilitate the use of disposable process units and to further increase the productivity due to higher convective mass transport in the membrane adsorber. Membrane adsorber Sartobind® Q was used to continuously purify BSA from the protein mixture. The usage of PCCC led to an increased capacity utilization (here 20%) and higher space–time-yields, and thus to a remarkable productivity increase and cost savings. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperReview
Recent Applications and Newly Developed Strategies of Solid-Phase Microextraction in Contaminant Analysis: Through the Environment to Humans
Separations 2019, 6(4), 54; https://doi.org/10.3390/separations6040054 - 06 Nov 2019
Viewed by 550
Abstract
The present review aims to describe the recent and most impactful applications in pollutant analysis using solid-phase microextraction (SPME) technology in environmental, food, and bio-clinical analysis. The covered papers were published in the last 5 years (2014–2019) thus providing the reader with information [...] Read more.
The present review aims to describe the recent and most impactful applications in pollutant analysis using solid-phase microextraction (SPME) technology in environmental, food, and bio-clinical analysis. The covered papers were published in the last 5 years (2014–2019) thus providing the reader with information about the current state-of-the-art and the future potential directions of the research in pollutant monitoring using SPME. To this end, we revised the studies focused on the investigation of persistent organic pollutants (POPs), pesticides, and emerging pollutants (EPs) including personal care products (PPCPs), in different environmental, food, and bio-clinical matrices. We especially emphasized the role that SPME is having in contaminant surveys following the path that goes from the environment to humans passing through the food web. Besides, this review covers the last technological developments encompassing the use of novel extraction coatings (e.g., metal-organic frameworks, covalent organic frameworks, PDMS-overcoated fiber), geometries (e.g., Arrow-SPME, multiple monolithic fiber-SPME), approaches (e.g., vacuum and cold fiber SPME), and on-site devices. The applications of SPME hyphenated with ambient mass spectrometry have also been described. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Solid-Phase Microextraction)
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Open AccessReview
Modern Approaches to Preparation of Body Fluids for Determination of Bioactive Compounds
Separations 2019, 6(4), 53; https://doi.org/10.3390/separations6040053 - 05 Nov 2019
Viewed by 421
Abstract
The current clinical and forensic toxicological analysis of body fluids requires a modern approach to sample preparation characterized by high selectivity and enrichment capability, suitability for micro-samples, simplicity and speed, and the possibility of automation and miniaturization, as well as the use of [...] Read more.
The current clinical and forensic toxicological analysis of body fluids requires a modern approach to sample preparation characterized by high selectivity and enrichment capability, suitability for micro-samples, simplicity and speed, and the possibility of automation and miniaturization, as well as the use of small amounts of reagents, especially toxic solvents. Most of the abovementioned features may be realized using so-called microextraction techniques which cover liquid-phase techniques (e.g., single-drop microextraction, SDME; dispersive liquid–liquid microextraction, DLLME; hollow-fiber liquid-phase microextraction, HF-LPME) and solid-phase extraction techniques (solid-phase microextraction, SPME; microextraction in packed syringes, MEPS; disposable pipette tip extraction, DPX; stir bar sorption extraction, SBSE). Some other extraction methodologies like dispersive solid-phase extraction (d-SPE) or magnetic solid-phase extraction (MSPE) can also be easily miniaturized. This review briefly describes and characterizes the abovementioned extraction methods, and then presents their current applications to the preparation of body fluids analyzed for bioactive compounds in combination with appropriate analytical methods, mainly chromatographic and related techniques. The perspectives of the analytical area we are interested in are also indicated. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Development of Alternative Green Sample Preparation Techniques)
Open AccessReview
Advancements in Non-Invasive Biological Surface Sampling and Emerging Applications
Separations 2019, 6(4), 52; https://doi.org/10.3390/separations6040052 - 04 Nov 2019
Viewed by 376
Abstract
Biological surfaces such as skin and ocular surface provide a plethora of information about the underlying biological activity of living organisms. However, they pose unique problems arising from their innate complexity, constant exposure of the surface to the surrounding elements, and the general [...] Read more.
Biological surfaces such as skin and ocular surface provide a plethora of information about the underlying biological activity of living organisms. However, they pose unique problems arising from their innate complexity, constant exposure of the surface to the surrounding elements, and the general requirement of any sampling method to be as minimally invasive as possible. Therefore, it is challenging but also rewarding to develop novel analytical tools that are suitable for in vivo and in situ sampling from biological surfaces. In this context, wearable extraction devices including passive samplers, extractive patches, and different microextraction technologies come forward as versatile, low-invasive, fast, and reliable sampling and sample preparation tools that are applicable for in vivo and in situ sampling. This review aims to address recent developments in non-invasive in vivo and in situ sampling methods from biological surfaces that introduce new ways and improve upon existing ones. Directions for the development of future technology and potential areas of applications such as clinical, bioanalytical, and doping analyses will also be discussed. These advancements include various types of passive samplers, hydrogels, and polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) patches/microarrays, and other wearable extraction devices used mainly in skin sampling, among other novel techniques developed for ocular surface and oral tissue/fluid sampling. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Development of Alternative Green Sample Preparation Techniques)
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Open AccessArticle
Low-Cost Quantitation of Multiple Volatile Organic Compounds in Air Using Solid-Phase Microextraction
Separations 2019, 6(4), 51; https://doi.org/10.3390/separations6040051 - 01 Nov 2019
Viewed by 534
Abstract
Current standard approaches for quantitation of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in outdoor air are labor-intensive and/or require additional equipment. Solid-phase microextraction (SPME) is a simpler alternative; however, its application is often limited by complex calibration, the need for highly pure gases and the [...] Read more.
Current standard approaches for quantitation of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in outdoor air are labor-intensive and/or require additional equipment. Solid-phase microextraction (SPME) is a simpler alternative; however, its application is often limited by complex calibration, the need for highly pure gases and the lack of automation. Earlier, we proposed the simple, automated and accurate method for quantitation of benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene and xylenes (BTEX) in air using 20 mL headspace vials and standard addition calibration. The aim of present study was to expand this method for quantitation of >20 VOCs in air. Twenty-five VOCs were chosen for the method development. Polydimethylsiloxane/divinylbenzene (PDMS/DVB) fiber provided better combination of detection limits and relative standard deviations of calibration slopes than other studied fibers. Optimal extraction time was 10 min. For quantification of all analytes except n-undecane, crimp top vials with samples should not stand on the autosampler tray for >8 h, while 22 most stable analytes can be quantified during 24 h. The developed method was successfully tested for automated quantification of VOCs in outdoor air samples collected in Almaty, Kazakhstan. Relative standard deviations (RSDs) of the responses of 23 VOCs were below 15.6%. Toluene-to-benzene concentration ratios were below 1.0 in colder days, indicating that most BTEX originated from non-transport-related sources. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Solid-Phase Microextraction)
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Open AccessArticle
Fatty Acids from Paracentrotus lividus Sea Urchin Shells Obtained via Rapid Solid Liquid Dynamic Extraction (RSLDE)
Separations 2019, 6(4), 50; https://doi.org/10.3390/separations6040050 - 22 Oct 2019
Viewed by 512
Abstract
Sea urchins (Echinodermata, Echinoidea) are good a source of bioactive compounds belonging to different classes of natural substances. The edible Mediterranean sea urchin Paracentrotus lividus is a renowned animal model for study in different fields of biology, but it is intensively harvested for [...] Read more.
Sea urchins (Echinodermata, Echinoidea) are good a source of bioactive compounds belonging to different classes of natural substances. The edible Mediterranean sea urchin Paracentrotus lividus is a renowned animal model for study in different fields of biology, but it is intensively harvested for high commercial value due to the delicacy of its gonads. Most studies have focused on the composition and the nutritional value of P. lividus gonads (the edible part), but little interest has been taken in the other body parts, such as the shells and spines, which are generally considered waste material. The purpose of this study was to obtain an extract from sea urchin shells, with a green methodology of extraction, and to characterize the lipophilic components for potential applications. The shells of P. lividus were extracted via a very well performing technology based on rapid solid liquid dynamic extraction (RSLDE) implemented via an automated device (Naviglio Extractor®). The obtained extract shows the presence of fatty acids and their esters (methyl, ethyl and 1-glycerol esters). Gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) measurements were used to determine fatty acid abundance in the chromatographic fractions of the extract. Arachidonic acid (ARA), 5,8,11,14,17-eicosapentanoic acid (EPA), and 11-eicosenoic acids and their esters are the most abundant components. The presence of many polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) in the extract, even in low percentages allows a future application in nutrition or medical use. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Extraction and Isolation of Natural Products)
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Open AccessArticle
Automation of µ-SPE (Smart-SPE) and Liquid-Liquid Extraction Applied for the Analysis of Chemical Warfare Agents
Separations 2019, 6(4), 49; https://doi.org/10.3390/separations6040049 - 09 Oct 2019
Viewed by 561
Abstract
Existing autosamplers are frequently applied only for subjecting the samples to the instruments for injection. In our study, we have set up a TriPlusRSH autosampler mounted on a GC-FID-MS/MS system using the new Method Composer and Script Editor software to automatize all necessary [...] Read more.
Existing autosamplers are frequently applied only for subjecting the samples to the instruments for injection. In our study, we have set up a TriPlusRSH autosampler mounted on a GC-FID-MS/MS system using the new Method Composer and Script Editor software to automatize all necessary sample preparation steps and subsequent injection of samples in the field of chemical disarmament. Those include but are not limited to: liquid-liquid extraction, drying steps, solvent exchange, and µ-SPE. Tedious and error prone off-line steps are eliminated. In particular, when investigating highly toxic substances like chemical warfare agents or anticancer drugs, automation can help to minimize health risks for lab personnel. The setup engaged features brand new prototype equipment, e.g., a centrifuge to assist in phase separation for liquid-liquid extraction. Efficiency and accuracy of the automated methods were carefully evaluated and proven to outperform the respective manual steps after optimization, e.g., the processing time is up to 60% faster and recovery rates are doubled. The developed workflows can easily be adapted to other sample preparation protocols, e.g., determination of octanol/water partition coefficients, and be used amongst different instruments and chromatography data handling systems. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Development of Alternative Green Sample Preparation Techniques)
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Open AccessArticle
A Zwitterionic Hydrophilic Interaction Liquid Chromatographic Photo Diode Array Method as a Tool to Investigate Oxalic Acid in Bees: Comparison with Mass Spectrometric Methods
Separations 2019, 6(4), 48; https://doi.org/10.3390/separations6040048 - 05 Oct 2019
Viewed by 515
Abstract
Background: Oxalic acid constitutes beekeepers′ leading choice for the battle of the parasitic mite Varroa destructor considering its efficacy, low cost, and easy application. Nevertheless, its broad use and reported synergistic effects prompted us to explore analytical methodologies for its determination in [...] Read more.
Background: Oxalic acid constitutes beekeepers′ leading choice for the battle of the parasitic mite Varroa destructor considering its efficacy, low cost, and easy application. Nevertheless, its broad use and reported synergistic effects prompted us to explore analytical methodologies for its determination in honeybees, especially after death incidents. Methods: The extraction of oxalic acid from bees was conducted by applying a simplified water extraction protocol. Oxalic acid′s content in honeybees was investigated through a novel zwiterionic hydrophilic interaction liquid chromatographic coupled to photo diode array (ZIC-HILIC-PDA) method and paralleled to gas/liquid chromatographic mass spectrometric methods. Results: The analytical method was validated, exhibiting a sufficient limit of quantification (LOQ) of 1.46 μg/g bee bw and precision and accuracy within the acceptable statistical limits as expressed by the relative standard deviation (RSD%) obtained from repeatability-reproducibility and recovery studies <12.5%. The application of the analytical method to 45 real honeybee samples demonstrated a fluctuation of oxalic acid’s concentrations from 1.6 to 1202.4 μg/g bee bw, verifying its frequent use in apiculture, exemplified by an overall 19% of positive samples. Conclusions: ZIC-HILIC-PDA proves a pivotal and alternative method to mass spectrometry tools in the determination of oxalic acid and other organic acids in honeybees and pertinent commodities. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Metal–Organic Frameworks as Key Materials for Solid-Phase Microextraction Devices—A Review
Separations 2019, 6(4), 47; https://doi.org/10.3390/separations6040047 - 02 Oct 2019
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 808
Abstract
Metal–organic frameworks (MOFs) have attracted recently considerable attention in analytical sample preparation, particularly when used as novel sorbent materials in solid-phase microextraction (SPME). MOFs are highly ordered porous crystalline structures, full of cavities. They are formed by inorganic centers (metal ion atoms or [...] Read more.
Metal–organic frameworks (MOFs) have attracted recently considerable attention in analytical sample preparation, particularly when used as novel sorbent materials in solid-phase microextraction (SPME). MOFs are highly ordered porous crystalline structures, full of cavities. They are formed by inorganic centers (metal ion atoms or metal clusters) and organic linkers connected by covalent coordination bonds. Depending on the ratio of such precursors and the synthetic conditions, the characteristics of the resulting MOF vary significantly, thus drifting into a countless number of interesting materials with unique properties. Among astonishing features of MOFs, their high chemical and thermal stability, easy tuneability, simple synthesis, and impressive surface area (which is the highest known), are the most attractive characteristics that makes them outstanding materials in SPME. This review offers an overview on the current state of the use of MOFs in different SPME configurations, in all cases covering extraction devices coated with (or incorporating) MOFs, with particular emphases in their preparation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Solid-Phase Microextraction)
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
A Bottom-Up Approach for Data Mining in Bioaromatization of Beers Using Flow-Modulated Comprehensive Two-Dimensional Gas Chromatography/Mass Spectrometry
Separations 2019, 6(4), 46; https://doi.org/10.3390/separations6040046 - 25 Sep 2019
Viewed by 551
Abstract
In this study, we report the combination of comprehensive two-dimensional gas chromatography (GC×GC) with multivariate pattern recognition through template matching for the assignment of the contribution of Brazilian Ale 02 yeast strain to the aroma profile of beer compared with the traditional Nottingham [...] Read more.
In this study, we report the combination of comprehensive two-dimensional gas chromatography (GC×GC) with multivariate pattern recognition through template matching for the assignment of the contribution of Brazilian Ale 02 yeast strain to the aroma profile of beer compared with the traditional Nottingham yeast. Volatile organic compounds (VOC) from two beer samples, which were fermented with these yeast strains were sampled using headspace solid-phase microextraction (HS-SPME). The aroma profiles from both beer samples were obtained using GC×GC coupled to a fast scanning quadrupole mass spectrometer. Data processing performed through multiway principal components analysis succeeded in separating both beer samples based on yeast strain. The execution of a simple and reliable procedure succeeded and identified 46 compounds as relevant for sample classification. Furthermore, the bottom-up approach spotted compounds found exclusively in the beer sample fermented with the Brazilian yeast, highlighting the bioaromatization properties introduced to the aroma profile by this yeast strain. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Development of Alternative Green Sample Preparation Techniques)
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Determination of Hydrophilic UV Filters in Real Matrices Using New-Generation Bar Adsorptive Microextraction Devices
Separations 2019, 6(4), 45; https://doi.org/10.3390/separations6040045 - 25 Sep 2019
Viewed by 472
Abstract
In the present contribution, new-generation bar adsorptive microextraction devices combined with microliquid desorption, followed by high-performance liquid chromatography–diode array detection (BAµE-µLD/HPLC–DAD) are proposed for the determination of two very polar ultraviolet (UV) filters (2-phenylbenzimidazole-5-sulfonic acid (PBS) and 5-benzoyl-4-hydroxy-2-methoxybenzenesulfonic acid (BZ4)) in aqueous media. [...] Read more.
In the present contribution, new-generation bar adsorptive microextraction devices combined with microliquid desorption, followed by high-performance liquid chromatography–diode array detection (BAµE-µLD/HPLC–DAD) are proposed for the determination of two very polar ultraviolet (UV) filters (2-phenylbenzimidazole-5-sulfonic acid (PBS) and 5-benzoyl-4-hydroxy-2-methoxybenzenesulfonic acid (BZ4)) in aqueous media. Different sorbents were evaluated as BAµE coating phases, in which polystyrene–divinylbenzene polymer showed the best selectivity for the analysis of both UV filters, with average extraction efficiency of 61.8 ± 9.1% for PBS and 69.5 ± 4.8% for BZ4. The validated method showed great reproducibility for the analysis of PBS and BZ4 UV filters, providing suitable limits of detection (0.04 µg L−1 and 0.20 µg L−1), as well as good linear dynamic ranges (0.16–16.0 and 0.8–80.0 µg L−1), respectively. The proposed methodology was applied for monitoring the target analytes in several real matrices, including tap, sea, and estuarine waters, as well as wastewater samples. Despite some matrix effects being observed for some real samples, good selectivity and linearity were obtained. The present contribution showed an innovative analytical cycle that includes the use of disposable devices, which make BAµE much more user-friendly and suitable for the routine work, being a remarkable analytical alternative for trace analysis of priority compounds in real matrices. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Development of Alternative Green Sample Preparation Techniques)
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