A new article evaluating the novel approach to reduce polyatomic interferences by bleeding a collision-reaction gas to improve detection limits by ICP-MS has been published and is available at Spectroscopyonline.com http://bit.ly/BCA230.
Authored by Meike Hamester, European Director for ICP-MS at Bruker, in conjunction with Bruker product specialists and Robert Thomas, a specialist in trace element analysis, the article discusses the impact of interferences when using inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) to determine trace and ultratrace elements in human body fluids. This method of analysis holds many advantages over more traditional spectroscopy techniques, but is prone to interferences which, if not handled properly, can cause inaccuracies in the determination of key substances.
The article presents an approach to reduce plasma-, matrix- and solvent-induced polyatomic interferences to improve the detection limits of elements such as chromium, vanadium, arsenic and selenium, which are notoriously problematic elements for ICP-MS. The use of a single set of conditions is demonstrated, allowing for reduced analysis time and low sample uptake, a clear benefit in applications where sample size is often a limitation.
Additionally, the article presents data for the optimization of operating parameters for the determination of ultratrace levels of beryllium in human urine. Beryllium is widely used in the manufacture of day-to-day products such as ceramics, automotive alloys and various electrical circuit boards, as well as occurring naturally in rocks, coal, soil and volcanic ash, but long-term exposure can cause serious health problems if left unchecked. The World Health Organization (WHO) has classified the element as a human carcinogen and analysis of the toxic effects on humans must be achieved with higher sensitivity.
Meike Hamester commented on the studies behind the article, "Traditionally, elements that were difficult to analyze by ICP-MS became less problematic and were measured with good accuracy and precision with the removal of interferences using hydrogen as the optimum collision-gas, equally helium can also be effective." Hamester went on to say that: "The simple, fast and very effective methodology for obtaining maximum sensitivity for low mass elements such as beryllium was optimized by altering instrumental parameters to amplify the beryllium signal".