Skip to main content
ARS Home » Plains Area » Fargo, North Dakota » Edward T. Schafer Agricultural Research Center » Animal Metabolism-Agricultural Chemicals Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #327582

Research Project: Environmental Chemical Residues and Their Impact in the Food Supply

Location: Animal Metabolism-Agricultural Chemicals Research

Title: Development of an electrochemical immunoassay for the detection of polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs)

item BETTAZII, FRANCESDA - University Of Florence
item MARTELLINI, TANIA - University Of Florence
item Shelver, Weilin
item CINCINELLI, ALESSANDRA - University Of Florence
item LANCIOTTI, EUDES - University Of Florence
item PALCHETTI, ILARIA - University Of Florence

Submitted to: Electroanalysis
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/22/2016
Publication Date: 8/9/2016
Citation: Bettazii, F., Martellini, T., Shelver, W.L., Cincinelli, A., Lanciotti, E., Palchetti, I. 2016. Development of an electrochemical immunoassay for the detection of polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs). Electroanalysis. 28(8):1817-1823. doi:10.1002/elan.201600127.

Interpretive Summary: Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) are a class of fire retardants that have been used extensively in a wide variety of products, including building materials, electronic and plastics. Because of their toxicity, persistence and hazardous effects on humans and environment, penta-BDE and octa-BDE have been banned from use and production in the European Union since 2004, while the use of deca-BDE in electronics and electrical applications has been banned since 2008. However, despite these actions, the persistent PBDEs have been detected in the environmental and food matrices. The determination of these compounds in foodstuffs and the estimation of the health risk of dietary PBDE exposure are critical. In this paper, the development of an electrochemical immunoassay for PBDE detection, coupling modified magnetic beads with an array of screen-printed electrodes, is described. The use of an array of electrodes allows rapid, reliable and economical measurements of several samples simultaneously. Due to the inherent disposability of these sensors, contamination among samples is avoided. The results obtained for the analysis of food sample extracts correlated well with those obtained with traditional instrumental analysis (GC-MS).

Technical Abstract: Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) are persistent environmental substances that were commonly used as fire retardants in a wide number of commercial products. Their low reactivity, high hydrophobicity and bioaccumulative properties cause their ubiquity in the air, water, food and lead to extensive exposure of world population to these compounds. The severe health problems caused by PBDEs lead them to be banned from the market. In March 2014 the European Commission issued a recommendation in which member states are requested to monitor brominated flame retardants in food, in order to evaluate human and wildlife exposure. Here, we described the development of an electrochemical magnetic particle enzyme-linked immunoassay to analyze PBDEs in food samples. The immunological reaction is based on a competitive scheme, using an alkaline phosphatase labeled congener as tracer. The anti-PBDE antibody modified magnetic particles are captured on the surface of carbon disposable array of sensors. The reaction extent is finally electrochemically measured by differential pulse voltammetry, upon the addition of substrate. Under the optimized conditions, a limit of detection of 0.18 ng/mL with a limit of quantification of 0.30 ng/mL and a quantification range of 0.30- 6.9 ng/mL, (RSD%= 12) is obtained. Results of food samples obtained from the newly developed electrochemical immunoassay are also reported.