Environmental science and pollution research international

An environmentally friendly method for the determination of triazine herbicides in estuarine seawater samples by dispersive liquid-liquid microextraction.

PMID 25096490


A fast, simple, sensitive and green chemistry method using dispersive liquid-liquid microextraction (DLLME) for the simultaneous determination of seven triazine herbicides (ametryn, atrazine, cyanazine, propazine, simazine, simetryn and terbuthylazine) in estuarine seawater samples has been developed. DLLME was carried out using a small volume of seawater (25 mL) and 300 μL of 1-octanol. Herbicide concentrations were determined by liquid chromatography-diode array detection, and results were confirmed by liquid chromatography-electrospray ionisation tandem spectrometry analysis. The analytical features of the proposed method were satisfactory with repeatability < ±5% and intermediate precision < ±10%, and recoveries ranged from 81-102% for all compounds. All the triazines exhibited linear matrix calibration curves with coefficients of determination >0.999 for all the analytes except for simazine (0.9975). Limits of quantification ranged between 0.19 and 1.12 μg L(-1). The method was applied to the analysis of seawater samples from ten points susceptible to contamination by triazines from estuary of A Coruña (Galicia, NW of Spain). The levels of the seven triazines were below the LODs in the analysed samples. Use of proposed method will allow for monitoring of triazines at levels below the regulatory limits set by the European Directive 2008/105/EC of 2 and 4 μg L(-1) for atrazine and simazine, respectively.