Analysis of Tomato Matrix Effect in Pesticide Residue Quantification through QuEChERS and Single Quadrupole GC/MS

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The detection of pesticide in tomato (Solanum lycopersicum L.) matrix using Gas Chromatography hyphenated to Mass Spectrometry detector (GC/MS) can affect the sensitivity of the analysis by enhancement or suppression of their chromatography response, the percentages of recoveries and leading to errors in the quantification of the pesticides. In this study, the matrix effect was investigated using nine pesticides, and "Quick, Easy, Cheap, Effective, Rugged and Safe" (QuEChERS)-GC/MS analytical technique was validated for pesticides multiresidue analysis. The matrix effect was determined using not statistical and statistical procedures including ANOVA, with similar results. Strong negative matrix effect was found for the pesticides trifluralin, 4,4'-DDT, and permethrin, resulting in the increment of the chromatogram background and a decrease in their detection responses. Contrary, an enhancement induced by the matrix presence was obtained for carbaryl and azinphos methyl, showing a positive medium matrix effect. While, dimethoate, simazine, 4,4'-DDE, and iprodione did not exhibit matrix effect. The detection limits (LOD) obtained, varied from 0.003 to 0.1 mg kg-1. Reproducibility was less than 20% for each pesticide. Recoveries were found to be between 71% and 121%, except for dimethoate, carbaryl, and azinphos methyl which reached values lower than 70%. Recoveries relative standard deviations were less than 22%. QuEChERS-GC/MS technique was used for evaluation of fresh commercial tomatoes samples, detecting carbaryl in all of them, but in concentration levels lower than the maximum residue limits according to regulations of Codex.

Ana M. Domínguez
Fabian Placencia
Francisco Cereceda
Ximena Fadic
Waldo Quiroz
Chilean Journal of Agricultural Research