TITLE

Extraction of methylmercury from tissue and plant samples by acid leaching

AUTHOR(S)
Hintelmann, Holger; Nguyen, Hong T.
PUB. DATE
January 2005
SOURCE
Analytical & Bioanalytical Chemistry;Jan2005, Vol. 381 Issue 2, p360
SOURCE TYPE
Academic Journal
DOC. TYPE
Article
ABSTRACT
A simple and efficient extraction method based on acidic leaching has been developed for measurement of methylmercury (MeHg) in benthic organisms and plant material. Methylmercury was measured by speciated isotope-dilution mass spectrometry (SIDMS), using gas chromatography interfaced with inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (GC-ICP-MS). Reagent concentration and digestion temperature were optimized for several alkaline and acidic extractants. Recovery was evaluated by addition of MeHg enriched with CHHg+. Certified reference materials (CRM) were used to evaluate the efficiency of the procedure. The final digestion method used 5 mL of 4 mol L-1 HNO3 at 55°C to leach MeHg from tissue and plant material. The digest was further processed by aqueous phase ethylation, without interference with the ethylation step, resulting in 96±7% recovery of CHHg+ from oyster tissue and 93±7% from pine needles. Methylmercury was stable in this solution for at least 1 week and measured concentrations of MeHg in CRM were statistically not different from certified values. The method was applied to real samples of benthic invertebrates and inter-laboratory comparisons were conducted using lyophilized zooplankton, chironomidae, and notonectidae samples.
ACCESSION #
16004461

 

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