Comprehensive Microcystins Analysis and Identification Using Innovative Sample Preparation and Novel LC/MS Techniques

Drinking Water
Oral Presentation

Prepared by T. Anumol1, R. Hindle2, K. Hunt3
1 - Agilent, 2850 Centerville Road, Wilmington, DE, 19808, United States
2 - Vogon Laboratory Services, , , Canada
3 - Vogon Laboratory Services, , , United States

Contact Information: [email protected]; 302-419-8909


Microcystins (MCs) are cyclic peptides containing seven amino acids, and their occurrence in fresh waters is a serious environmental and public health concern. MCs are powerful hepatotoxins and they may promote tumour development in mammals, presenting a severe threat to livestock and human drinking water sources. Two EPA methods describe the analyses of algal toxins in drinking water using LC/MS/MS. EPA Method 544 (2015) includes 6 MCs plus Nodularin-R. EPA Method 545 analyzes cylindrospermopsin and anatoxin-a. Data will be presented on both methods including EPA validated performance criteria. EPA 544 requires tedious and time-consuming offline solid phase extraction before analysis on the LC/MS/MS. We will also present the analysis of microcystins using an automated online SPE to provide lower detection levels with hundred times less sample volume and several hours faster than EPA 544. Unfortunately, several hundred microcystins are known to be present in the environment and many of them do not have authentic standards available to quantify by LC/MS/MS so we will present a comprehensive workflow for identification of novel microcystins in water.