Universidad de Navarra, Faculty of Pharmacy and Nutrition, Pharmaceutical Technology and Chemistry Department Research Group MITOX.C/ Irunlarrea 1, 31008, Pamplona, Navarra, Spain. Electronic address: [Email]
We report the methodology for the quantification of 19 mycotoxins in human plasma using high performance liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (triple quadrupole). The studied mycotoxins were: deepoxy-deoxynivalenol, aflatoxins (B1, B2, G1, G2 and M1), T-2 and HT-2, ochratoxins A and B, zearalenone, sterigmatocystin, nivalenol, deoxynivalenol, 3-acetyldeoxynivalenol, 15-acetyldeoxynivalenol, neosolaniol, diacetoxyscirpenol and fusarenon-X. Sample deproteinization and cleanup were performed in one step using Captiva EMR-lipid (3 mL) cartridges and acetonitrile (with 1% formic acid). The extraction step was simple and fast. Validation was based on the evaluation of limits of detection (LOD) and quantification, linearity, precision, recovery, matrix effect, and stability. LOD values ranged from 0.04 ng/mL for aflatoxin B1 to 2.7 ng/mL for HT-2, except for nivalenol, which was 9.1 ng/mL. Recovery was obtained in intermediate precision conditions and at three concentration levels. Mean values ranged from 68.8% for sterigmatocystin to 97.6% for diacetoxyscirpenol (RDS ≤ 15% for all the mycotoxins). Matrix effects (assessed at three concentration levels and in intermediate conditions) were not significant for most of the mycotoxins and were between 75.4% for sterigmatocystin and 109.3% for ochratoxin B (RDS ≤ 15% for all the mycotoxins). This methodology will be useful in human biomonitoring studies of mycotoxins for its reliability.