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Quantitation of 2-chlorovinylarsonous acid in human urine by automated solid-phase microextraction--gas chromatography--mass spectrometry.

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Division of Laboratory Sciences, National Center for Environmental Health, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 4770 Buford Highway, NE, Mailstop F19, Atlanta, GA 30341, USA.


Lewisite [dichloro(2-chlorovinyl)arsine] is a highly toxic chemical warfare agent with vesicant properties. The accidental exposure to lewisite or its intentional use as a chemical terrorism weapon are a public health threat and warrant investigations for the development of analytical methods to detect biomarkers of exposure to lewisite. Under aqueous conditions, lewisite rapidly hydrolyzes to the non-volatile 2-chlorovinylarsonous acid (CVAA). We have developed a sensitive, simple, and automated method for measuring CVAA in human urine. The assay is based on the use of solid-phase microextraction (SPME) and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) after derivatization of the CVAA with 1,3-propanedithiol (PDT). The volatile CVAA-PDT is adsorbed onto a SPME fiber and analyzed by GC-MS. The assay was validated on human urine samples spiked with CVAA to determine the accuracy, precision, and limit of detection (LOD). The LOD was 7.4 pg in 1 ml of urine.

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