A reliable, sensitive and eco-friendly injection-port trimethylsilylated (TMS) derivatization and gas chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (GC-MS/MS) with furan chemical ionization (furan-CI) method was developed to determine melamine and cyanuric acid in powdered milk samples. The effects of several parameters related to the TMS-derivatization process (i.e., injection-port temperature, residence time and volume of silylating agent) and of various CI agents were investigated. Addition of a solution (3 μL) of bis(trimethyl)silyltrifluoroacetamide (BSTFA) containing 1% trimethylchlorosilane (TMCS) reagent to a 20-μL extract from the powdered milk sample gave an excellent yield of the tris-TMS-derivatives of melamine and cyanuric acid at an injection-port temperature of 90 °C. Furthermore, using furan as the CI agent in conjunction with tandem mass spectrometry provided the greatest sensitivity and selectivity of detection. The limits of quantitation (LOQs) for melamine and cyanuric acid were 0.5 and 1.0. ng/g in 0.5-g of powdered milk samples, respectively. The recoveries from spiked samples - after simple ultra-sonication with 5% dimethyl sulfoxide in acetonitrile coupled with n-hexane liquid-liquid extraction - ranged from 72% to 93% with relative standard deviations of lower than or equal to 18%. In three of four real powdered milk samples, melamine was detected at concentrations ranging from 36 to 1460. ng/g; and cyanuric acid was detected in two of these samples at concentrations of 17 and 180. ng/g.
- Injection-port derivatization
- Powdered milk analysis