Science Inventory

Total Arsenic Determination and Speciation in Infant Food Products by Ion Chromatography Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry


Vela, N. P. AND D. T. Heitkemper. Total Arsenic Determination and Speciation in Infant Food Products by Ion Chromatography Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry. JOURNAL OF AOAC INTERNATIONAL. AOAC International, Gaithersburg, MD, 87(1):244-252, (2004).


To develop sensitive arsenic speciation methodology for determining background exposure levels of inorganic arsenic in dietary samples, with an emphasis on infant diets, and to apply this to in vitro bioaccessibility studies.


Health risk associated with dietary arsenic intake may be different for infants and adults. Seafood is the main contributor to arsenic intake for adults while terrestrial-based food is the primary source for infants. Processed infant food products such as rice-based cereals, mixed rice/formula cereals, milk-based infant formula, applesauce and puree of peaches, pears, carrots, sweet potatoes, green beans, and squash were evaluated for total and speciated arsenic content. Arsenic concentrations found in rice-based cereals (63-320 ng/g dry weight) were similar to those reported for raw rice. Results for the analysis of powdered infant formula by inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) indicated a narrow and low arsenic concentration range (12 to 17 ng/g). Arsenic content in puree infant food products, including rice cereals, fruits and vegetables, varies from <1 to 24 ng/g wet weight. Sample treatment with trifluoroacetic acid at 100°C were an efficient and mild method for extraction of arsenic species present in different food matrixes as compared to alternative methods that included sonication and accelerated solvent extraction. Extraction recoveries from 94 to 128% were obtained when trhe summation of species was compared to total arsenic. The ion chromatography (IC)-ICP-MS method selected for arsenic speciation allowed for the quantitative determination of inorganic arsenic [As(III) + As(V)], dimethylarsnic acid (DMA), and methylarsonic acid (MMA). Inorganic arsenic and DMA are the main species found in rice-based and mixed rice/formula cereals, although traces of MMA were also detected. Inorganic arsenic was present in freeze-dried sweet potatoes, carrots, green beans, and peaches. MMA and DMA were not detected in these samples. Arsenic species in squash, pears, and applesauce were not detected above the mentioned detection limit.


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Record Details:

Product Published Date: 01/01/2004
Record Last Revised: 12/19/2013
OMB Category: Other
Record ID: 199407