Franke et al., 2020

Franke, A. A., Li, X., & Lai, J. F.; “Analysis of glyphosate, aminomethylphosphonic acid, and glufosinate from human urine by HRAM LC-MS;” Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry, 2020; DOI: 10.1007/s00216-020-02966-1.


Aminomethylphosphonic acid (AMPA) is the main metabolite of glyphosate (GLYP) and phosphonic acids in detergents. GLYP is a synthetic herbicide frequently used worldwide alone or together with its analog glufosinate (GLUF). The general public can be exposed to these potentially harmful chemicals; thus, sensitive methods to monitor them in humans are urgently required to evaluate health risks. We attempted to simultaneously detect GLYP, AMPA, and GLUF in human urine by high-resolution accurate-mass liquid chromatography mass spectrometry (HRAM LC-MS) before and after derivatization with 9-fluorenylmethoxycarbonyl chloride (Fmoc-Cl) or 1-methylimidazole-sulfonyl chloride (ImS-Cl) with several urine pre-treatment and solid phase extraction (SPE) steps. Fmoc-Cl derivatization achieved the best combination of method sensitivity (limit of detection; LOD) and accuracy for all compounds compared to underivatized urine or ImS-Cl-derivatized urine. Before derivatization, the best steps for GLYP involved 0.4 mM ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid (EDTA) pre-treatment followed by SPE pre-cleanup (LOD 37 pg/mL), for AMPA involved no EDTA pre-treatment and no SPE pre-cleanup (LOD 20 pg/mL) or 0.2-0.4 mM EDTA pre-treatment with no SPE pre-cleanup (LOD 19-21 pg/mL), and for GLUF involved 0.4 mM EDTA pre-treatment and no SPE pre-cleanup (LOD 7 pg/mL). However, for these methods, accuracy was sufficient only for AMPA (101-105%), while being modest for GLYP (61%) and GLUF (63%). Different EDTA and SPE treatments prior to Fmoc-Cl derivatization resulted in high sensitivity for all analytes but satisfactory accuracy only for AMPA. Thus, we conclude that our HRAM LC-MS method is suited for urinary AMPA analysis in cross-sectional studies. FULL TEXT