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Development and validation of an in‐house quantitative analysis method for cylindrospermopsin using hydrophilic interaction liquid chromatography–tandem mass spectrometry: Quantification demonstrated in 4 aquatic organisms

Esterhuizen‐Londt, Maranda, Kühn, Sandra, Pflugmacher, Stephan
Environmental toxicology and chemistry 2015 v.34 no.12 pp. 2878-2883
Daphnia magna, Egeria densa, Lumbriculus variegatus, Scenedesmus, aquatic environment, aquatic food webs, aquatic organisms, bioaccumulation, cylindrospermopsin, detection limit, humans, hydrophilicity, liquid chromatography, quantitative analysis, tandem mass spectrometry, toxicity
The cyanobacterial toxin cylindrospermopsin (CYN) is of great concern in aquatic environments because of its incidence, multiple toxicity endpoints, and, therefore, the severity of health implications. It may bioaccumulate in aquatic food webs, resulting in high exposure concentrations to higher‐order trophic levels, particularly humans. Because of accumulation at primary levels resulting from exposure to trace amounts of toxin, a sensitive analytical technique with proven aquatic applications is required. In the present study, a hydrophilic interaction liquid chromatographic–tandem mass spectrometric method with a lower limit of detection of 200 fg on column (signal‐to‐noise ratio = 3, n = 9) and a lower limit of quantification of 1 pg on column (signal‐to‐noise ratio = 11, n = 9) with demonstrated application in 4 aquatic organisms is described. The analytical method was optimized and validated with a linear range (r² = 0.999) from 0.1 ng mL–¹ to 100 ng mL–¹ CYN. Mean recovery of the extraction method was 98 ± 2%. Application of the method was demonstrated by quantifying CYN uptake in Scenedesmus subspicatus (green algae), Egeria densa (Brazilian waterweed), Daphnia magna (water flea), and Lumbriculus variegatus (blackworm) after 24 h of static exposure to 50 μg L–¹ CYN. Uptake ranged from 0.05% to 0.11% of the nominal CYN exposure amount. This constitutes a sensitive and reproducible method for extraction and quantification of unconjugated CYN with demonstrated application in 4 aquatic organisms, which can be used in further aquatic toxicological investigations. Environ Toxicol Chem 2015;34:2878–2883. © 2015 SETAC