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Screening method for organophosphorus insecticides and their metabolites in olive oil samples based on headspace solid-phase microextraction coupled with gas chromatography.

  • Tsoutsi, C
  • Konstantinou, I
  • Hela, D
  • Albanis, T
Published Article
Analytica Chimica Acta
Publication Date
Jul 28, 2006
PMID: 17723527


This work is focused on the effectiveness of headspace solid-phase microextraction (HS-SPME) for the analysis of nine organophosphorus (OPs) insecticides (dimethoate, diazinon, fenitrothion, malathion, fenthion, parathion ethyl, methyl bromophos, methidathion, ethion) and four metabolites (omethoate, malaoxon, fenthion sulfoxide and fenthion sulfone) residues in olive oil samples. The efficiency of six fibre types with different film thickness was compared. PDMS (100 microm) was found to be the most suitable fibre for the analysis of OPs in olive oils. Optimization of SPME conditions (stirring rate, extraction time, temperature, salt addition) was based on previous developed method in the laboratory that was enriched with additional analytes including major metabolites. In addition, the effect of the oil matrix on the pesticide recoveries was evaluated using spiked oil samples of different composition (acidity, fatty acids, triglycerides, sterols). It was found that only acidity and total amount of sterols are the main factors influencing the SPME efficiency. Matrix effects were compensated for, by using the internal standard method for the quantification of pesticides. The recoveries at three spiking levels were between 80% and 106% with R.S.D. (%) values below 10% in most cases. Good linearity (R2>0.985) was observed in the 0.025-0.50 mg kg(-1) concentration range with satisfactory R.S.D. (%) values of 4.5-10.4%. The method allowed detection of the tested compounds at concentrations below 0.010 mg kg(-1) with GC-FTD detection. In addition, intra- and inter-day precision was satisfactory (R.S.D. (%) <10%). The performance results confirm the usefulness of the proposed methodology for the analysis of OPs in olive oils. Moreover, the maximum residue limits required by European and international regulations can be attained without difficulty. Finally, the method was applied to 30 virgin olive oil samples from major olive production areas of Greece in the framework of an extended monitoring survey of OPs residues in olive oil. The most commonly found pesticides were fenthion, dimethoate and ethion in levels that did not exceed the MRLs.

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