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ARS Home » Midwest Area » Peoria, Illinois » National Center for Agricultural Utilization Research » Mycotoxin Prevention and Applied Microbiology Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #311768

Title: Determination of T-2 and HT-2 toxins from maize by direct analysis in real time mass spectrometry

item Busman, Mark
item Maragos, Chris

Submitted to: World Mycotoxin Journal
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 1/27/2015
Publication Date: 2/17/2015
Citation: Busman, M., Maragos, C.M. 2015. Determination of T-2 and HT-2 toxins from maize by direct analysis in real time mass spectrometry. World Mycotoxin Journal. 8(4):489-497.

Interpretive Summary: A technique was developed to determine levels of T-2 toxin from corn. T -2 toxin is produced by a variety of fungi during their infestation of growing corn kernels. T-2 toxin is acutely toxic to many mammals, and is believed to act by inhibiting both protein and DNA synthesis. The developed analytical technique is based on the coupling of ambient ionization from a paper surface with mass spectrometry. The procedure allows the rapid and sensitive detection of T-2 toxin from corn samples without extensive sample preparation or the normally required chromatographic separation. The method allows convenient analysis of T-2 toxin from corn with higher selectivity in detection than commonly used screening methods. This development of the quantitative ambient ionization – mass spectrometry technique for T-2 toxin from corn will aid in the further development of convenient techniques for toxin analysis from intact corn kernels, requiring no sample preparation. This work provides a rapid, sensitive and convenient analytical tool to grain processors seeking to assure the safety of utilization of corn based products.

Technical Abstract: Direct analysis in real time (DART) ionization coupled to mass spectrometry (MS) was used for the rapid quantitative analysis of T-2 toxin, and the related HT-2 toxin, extracted from corn. Sample preparation procedures and instrument parameters were optimized to obtain sensitive and accurate determination of the toxins. The lowest calibration levels (LCL) were 50 µg/kg for T-2 toxin and 300 µg/kg for HT-2 toxin. Quantitative analysis was performed with the use of matrix-matched standards employing the 13C-labeled internal standard for T-2 toxin. DART-MS of corn extracts spiked with T-2 toxin gave a linear response over the range of 50–1000 µg/kg. With the isotope dilution technique, good recoveries (99-110%) and repeatabilities (RSD 7.4–11.6%) were obtained at T-2 toxin spiking levels of 100 and 1000 µg/kg. Adaptability of the developed method was demonstrated by analysis of T-2 and HT-2 toxins from an oat flour QC material. The results here further indicate the potential for application of ambient ionization mass spectrometry to provide sensitive, convenient quantitation of mycotoxins from grains.