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Anal Chem ; 87(2): 1314-22, 2015 Jan 20.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-25553788


A new method enabling sensitive real-time air monitoring of highly reactive chemical warfare agents, namely, mustard gas (HD) and Lewisite 1 (L1), by detecting ions of their in-line reaction products instead of intact agents, is proposed. The method is based on corona discharge-initiated atmospheric pressure chemical ionization coupled with ion trap tandem mass spectrometry (MS(n)) via counterflow ion introduction. Therefore, it allows for highly sensitive and specific real-time detection of a broad range of airborne compounds. In-line chemical reactions, ionization reactions, and ion fragmentations of these agents were investigated. Mustard gas is oxygenated in small quantity by reactive oxygen species generated in the corona discharge. With increasing air humidity, the MS(2) signal intensity of protonated molecules of mono-oxygenated HD decreases but exceeds that of dominantly existing intact HD. This result can be explained in view of proton affinity. Lewisite 1 is hydrolyzed and oxidized. As the humidity increases from zero, the signal of the final product, namely, didechlorinated, dihydroxylated, and mono-oxygenated L1, quickly increases and reaches a plateau, giving the highest MS(2) and MS(3) signals among those of L1 and its reaction products. The addition of minimal moisture gives the highest signal intensity, even under low humidity. The method was demonstrated to provide sufficient analytical performance to meet the requirements concerning hygienic management and counter-terrorism. It will be the first practical method, in view of sensitivity and specificity, for real-time air monitoring of HD and L1 without sample pretreatment.

Anal Chem ; 86(9): 4316-26, 2014 May 06.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-24678766


A highly sensitive and specific real-time field-deployable detection technology, based on counterflow air introduction atmospheric pressure chemical ionization, has been developed for a wide range of chemical warfare agents (CWAs) comprising gaseous (two blood agents, three choking agents), volatile (six nerve gases and one precursor agent, five blister agents), and nonvolatile (three lachrymators, three vomiting agents) agents in air. The approach can afford effective chemical ionization, in both positive and negative ion modes, for ion trap multiple-stage mass spectrometry (MS(n)). The volatile and nonvolatile CWAs tested provided characteristic ions, which were fragmented into MS(3) product ions in positive and negative ion modes. Portions of the fragment ions were assigned by laboratory hybrid mass spectrometry (MS) composed of linear ion trap and high-resolution mass spectrometers. Gaseous agents were detected by MS or MS(2) in negative ion mode. The limits of detection for a 1 s measurement were typically at or below the microgram per cubic meter level except for chloropicrin (submilligram per cubic meter). Matrix effects by gasoline vapor resulted in minimal false-positive signals for all the CWAs and some signal suppression in the case of mustard gas. The moisture level did influence the measurement of the CWAs.

Poluentes Atmosféricos/análise , Substâncias para a Guerra Química/análise , Espectrometria de Massas em Tandem/métodos , Pressão Atmosférica , Limite de Detecção
Anal Chem ; 85(5): 2659-66, 2013 Mar 05.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-23339735


A new method for sensitively and selectively detecting chemical warfare agents (CWAs) in air was developed using counter-flow introduction atmospheric pressure chemical ionization mass spectrometry (MS). Four volatile and highly toxic CWAs were examined, including the nerve gases sarin and tabun, and the blister agents mustard gas (HD) and Lewisite 1 (L1). Soft ionization was performed using corona discharge to form reactant ions, and the ions were sent in the direction opposite to the airflow by an electric field to eliminate the interfering neutral molecules such as ozone and nitrogen oxide. This resulted in efficient ionization of the target CWAs, especially in the negative ionization mode. Quadrupole MS (QMS) and ion trap tandem MS (ITMS) instruments were developed and investigated, which were movable on the building floor. For sarin, tabun, and HD, the protonated molecular ions and their fragment ions were observed in the positive ion mode. For L1, the chloride adduct ions of L1 hydrolysis products were observed in negative ion mode. The limit of detection (LOD) values in real-time or for a 1 s measurement monitoring the characteristic ions were between 1 and 8 µg/m(3) in QMS instrument. Collision-induced fragmentation patterns for the CWAs were observed in an ITMS instrument, and optimized combinations of the parent and daughter ion pairs were selected to achieve real-time detection with LOD values of around 1 µg/m(3). This is a first demonstration of sensitive and specific real-time detection of both positively and negatively ionizable CWAs by MS instruments used for field monitoring.