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J Chromatogr A. 2008 May 9;1190(1-2):74-9. doi: 10.1016/j.chroma.2008.02.082. Epub 2008 Mar 2.

Determination of hexabromocyclododecane diastereoisomers in air and soil by liquid chromatography-electrospray tandem mass spectrometry.

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State Key laboratory of Organic Geochemistry, Guangzhou Institute of Geochemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Guangzhou 510640, China.


Hexabromocyclododecanes (HBCDs), used as additive brominated flame retardants, are of high concern due to their widespread use and increasing levels in various environmental systems. High-performance liquid chromatography coupled with electrospray ionization tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) was developed for the determination of HBCD diastereoisomers. A detailed study was carried out to optimize the composition of the mobile phase involving methanol/acetonitrile/water, and the values of MS/MS parameters. It was found that the mobile phase could simultaneously affect the chromatographic separation and sensitivity. The instrumental limits of detection (LODs) on column in this study were 0.5, 0.3 and 0.3 pg for alpha-HBCD, beta-HBCD and gamma-HBCD, respectively. The effects of extracted matrix components on HBCD determination were investigated by spiking air and soil sample extracts with three 13C-labelled individual stereoisomers. The results indicated that the responses of the HBCD analysis in air and soils were not significantly affected by matrix effects. The method reported here was further applied to the air and soil samples. Three HBCD diastereoisomers were detected in all the air and soil samples, with levels ranging from 1.2 to 1.8 pg/m3 and 1.7 to 5.6 ng/g dry weight, respectively.

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