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Pressurized liquid extraction of six tetracyclines from agricultural soils

Popova, Inna E., Morra, Matthew J., Parikh, Sanjai J.
Journal of environmental science and health 2019 v.54 no.1 pp. 35-40
agricultural soils, animal manures, animal well-being, chlortetracycline, detection limit, groundwater, high performance liquid chromatography, land application, liquids, mass spectrometry, metabolites, organic carbon, oxytetracycline, pH, quantitative analysis, risk, soil minerals, veterinary drugs
Veterinary antibiotics used in agriculture can be introduced into the environment through land application of animal manure, accumulating in soils and groundwaters and posing a significant risk to human health and animal well-being. As the analysis of tetracyclines in soil is challenging due to their strong interaction with soil minerals and organic carbon, the objective of this study was to develop a reliable and reproducible method for quantitative analysis of chlortetracycline and oxytetracycline, and their respective metabolites in soils. A method based on pressurized liquid extraction (PLE) with in-cell clean-up was developed for the extraction of chlortetracycline and oxytetracycline and four likely metabolites from a set of four soils. Optimized conditions included a cell size of 22 mL, soil loading of 5 g, pH of 8.0, methanol:water ratio of 3:1, 50 °C, and two cycles. Soil extracts were analysed by high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) coupled with ion trap mass spectrometry (MS). Recoveries of seven tetracyclines from soil ranged from 41% to 110%. The limits of detection for tetracyclines were 0.08–0.3 µg g⁻¹ soil, and intra- and inter-day variation ranged from 0.12–0.34%. The proposed PLE method is suitable for quantification of tetracyclines in agricultural soils at typical concentrations expected in contaminated environments.