HPLC-MS in Food Test

With the continuous improvement of living standards, food as a content closely related to people's lives, its nutrition and safety have attracted more and more attention. The main aspects of food safety issues include illegal food additives, pesticide residues, heavy metal contamination, microbial contamination, etc. In the process of food production and packaging, there may also be problems such as chemical contamination. Food manufacturers and retailers need to ensure that every step of the production line meets the requirements of food quality management and supervision. Food importers and exporters need to ensure that the food meets the laws and regulations or corresponding standards of the import and export regions.

High-performance liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (HPLC-MS) technology combines the powerful separation function of chromatography with the accurate identification function of mass spectrometry. This technology can simultaneously determine multiple compounds and has a wide range of applications in food testing. Creative Proteomics can provide you with HPLC / UHPLC-MS analysis platform to provide you with technical support.

Principles of HPLC-MS Technology

Most of the analysis objects of HPLC are samples with high polarity (including ionic compounds), poor volatility, and low thermal stability. The mixed samples are injected by means of a liquid chromatography system. The separated components flow out of the chromatograph and in turn enter the ion source through the interface and are continuously ionized. In the process of continuous accumulation of ions, they are separated according to the mass-to-mass ratio. The separated ion signals need to be converted into electrical signals, which are then transmitted to the computer data processing system and analyzed according to the actual conditions of the mass spectra.

HPLC-MS Analysis Workflow

➢ Sample pretreatment

Solid phase extraction (SPE), liquid-phase micro-extraction (LPME), supercritical fluid extraction (SPE), accelerated solvent extraction (ASE), gel permeation chromatography (GPC), microwave-assisted extraction (MAE). Remove salt, ion to reagent, protein and other matrix interference to keep the ion source clean and free of pollutants.

➢ LC-MS analysis

Qualitative and quantitative analysis of samples.

➢ Data processing analysis

Partial least squares method-discriminant analysis, orthogonal algorithm, artificial neural network and evolution-based computing algorithm.

HPLC-MS in Food Test
Schematic diagram of the HPLC-MS/MS system (Bae H et al., 2018)

HPLC-MS Platform in Creative Proteomics

  • The ionization interface system mainly adopts atmospheric pressure chemical Ionisation (APCI) and electrospray ionisation (ESI).
  • Suitable for a wide range. This method can analyze ionic/polar compounds, hardly volatile or thermally unstable compounds, and is widely applicable to various compounds.
  • High sensitivity (up to ppt range) and specificity. The limitations of conventional single particle detection are extremely low.
  • Quickly analyze complex matrices and various types of samples.
  • Save time, save energy, reduce waste.

Creative Proteomics' analytical scientists have extensive experience and knowledge in the application of HPLC-MS analysis to the food industry. We can provide fast turn-around, clear and concise written reports and customized services to help customers solve your analytical and technical problems. Contact us to discuss more.

1. Bae H, Jung H S, et al. Optimization of HPLC-tandem mass spectrometry for chlortetracycline using response surface analysis. Environmental Engineering Research, 2018, 23(3): 309-315.

* Not intended for personal food safety testing.

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