The use of multi-residue methods is now common place, meaning that less selective extraction protocols, such as Quick Easy Cheap Effective Rugged and Safe (QuEChERS) have been widely adopted by testing laboratories and research facilities. However for some analysis requiring low limits of detection in complex matrices, further clean up may still be required. This application note outlines the use of stir bar sorptive extraction (SBSE) for clean up and enrichment as an alternative to SPE procedures following QuEChERS extractions for analysis of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). Following SBSE extraction, the Twister™ stir bar was thermally desorbed directly into the GC-MS/MS instrument. Good correlation was achieved for the extracted calibration standards and an AQC sample at 250 µg/L gave recoveries between 78 and 112% for all of the 23 analytes. Results suggest a limit of detection of < 100 ng/L should be achievable for PAHs in a complex matrix, demonstrating the suitability of this approach for sample clean up.
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Use of SBSE for Clean-up of QuEChERS Extracts From Complex Matrices