Submitted to: Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry
Publication Type: Review Article
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/12/2018
Publication Date: 6/27/2018
Citation: Lehotay, S.J., Chen, Y. 2018. Hits and misses in research trends to monitor contaminants in foods. Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry. 410:5331-5351. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00216-018-1195-3.
Technical Abstract: Monitoring chemicals of toxicological concern in food is commonly needed for many purposes, which include improving food safety, consumer confidence, regulatory enforcement, risk assessment, international food trade, label claims, environmental protection, industry needs, and academic research. Chemicals of current concern include a variety of toxins, pesticides, veterinary drugs, growth promoters, environmental contaminants, toxic metals, allergens, endocrine disruptors, adulterants, harmful byproducts, food additives, and miscellaneous other chemicals. As global food trade has expanded and detection techniques improved, chemical contaminant analysis of foods has also increased in importance and activity. In the past decade, mass spectrometry (MS) has become the analytical tool of choice to detect most chemical contaminants. Recent advances in MS technology that improve both selectivity and sensitivity permit coverage of a wide range of chemicals, thereby enabling revolutionary approaches in generic sample preparation followed by minimal (or no) chromatographic separations. This has led to the development of “mega-methods” designed to detect hundreds of trace level analytes in food traditionally analyzed using multiple methods, previously done by different groups in different labs. State-of-the-art MS-based tools, including sophisticated software, are being designed with the intent to detect and identify nontargeted food adulterants. This review article is aimed to give an overview of the recent literature in the analysis of selected chemicals of toxicological concern in foods, and highlight trends leading into future directions.