Pressurized Solvent Extraction with Ethyl Acetate and Liquid Chromatography—Tandem Mass Spectrometry for the Analysis of Selected Conazole Fungicides in Matcha
Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry, Trace Analysis Facility, University of Regina; 3737 Wascana Parkway, Regina, SK S4S 0A2, Canada
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Toxics 2018, 6(4), 64; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics6040064
Received: 30 September 2018 / Revised: 21 October 2018 / Accepted: 23 October 2018 / Published: 25 October 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Analysis of Chemical Contaminants in Food)
The extraction of powdered nutraceuticals is challenging due to the low water content and high concentration of matrix components that can lead to significant matrix effects in liquid chromatography-positive ion electrospray ionization-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-ESI+-MS/MS). In this study we assess the feasibility of using pressurized solvent extraction with ethyl acetate to reduce the co-extraction of polar matrix components. Pigment attributed to chlorophyll was removed with in-cell clean-up utilizing Anasorb 747, Florisil®, and C18. Visible inspection of the extracts showed that pigment was removed from matcha, a powdered green tea sample. Pressurized solvent extraction with in-cell clean-up can be utilized to remove pigments from powdered samples such as nutraceuticals. Average matrix effect of the 32 target analytes that observed mass spectrometric signal suppression or soft MS signal enhancement was −41 ± 19% with the majority of analytes having a protonated molecular ion with m/z of 250 to 412. As generally moderate signal suppression was observed for conazole fungicides and structurally related compounds analyzed by LC-ESI+-MS/MS, it is recommended that matrix matched or standard addition calibration is used for quantitation. Catachins, other polyphenols, and caffeine are expected to contribute to the matrix effects observed in LC-ESI+-MS/MS. Diniconazole, fenbuconazole, and tebufenozide were the only target analytes with severe MS signal enhancement. Low levels (0.002–0.004 mg/kg) of prothioconazole-desthio and flusilazole were detected, along with trace levels of tebuthiuron in matcha.