A multi-analyte method for the quantification of contemporary pesticides in human serum and plasma using high-resolution mass spectrometry

We have developed a sensitive and accurate analytical method for quantifying 29 contemporary pesticides in human serum or plasma. These pesticides include organophosphates, carbamates, chloroacetanilides, and synthetic pyrethroids among others and include pesticides used in agricultural and residential settings. Our method employs a simple solid-phase extraction followed by a highly selective analysis using isotope dilution gas chromatography–high-resolution mass spectrometry. Our method is very accurate, has limits of detection in the low pg/g range and coefficients of variation of typically less than 20% at the low pg/g end of the method linear range. We have used this method to measure plasma pesticide concentrations in females living in an urban area. We found detectable concentrations of carbaryl/naphthalene, propoxur, bendiocarb, chlorpyrifos, diazinon, dicloran, captan and folpet or their metabolites in more than 20% of the plasma samples tested.

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