Anal Bioanal Chem. 2022 Mar 10. doi: 10.1007/s00216-022-03997-6. Online ahead of print.
Exposure to household air pollutants is becoming a serious environmental health risk. Various methods can be applied to assess humans’ exposure status to indoor pollutants, with breath monitoring being among the best options. Breath sampling is fast and non-invasive, and contains compounds that can be used as markers for evaluating exposure length and estimating internal concentrations of pollutants. However, the distribution of compounds between gas and droplets in breath samples represents one of the key challenges associated with this analytical method. In this work, a needle-trap device (NTD) was prepared by packing the needle with a porous filter, divinyl benzene, and Carboxen to enable the exhaustive capture of both droplet-bound and gaseous components. Furthermore, fiber-based solid-phase microextraction (SPME) was also applied to extract compounds from only the gas phase to distinguish this portion of analytes from the total concentration in the sample. Dynamic, real-time breath sampling was enabled via a new sampling tube equipped with 2 one-way valves, which was specially designed for this work. Both methods provided satisfactory reproducibility, repeatability, and sensitivity, with detection limits as low as 0.05 ng mL-1. To investigate the real-world applicability of the proposed devices, breath samples were obtained from volunteers who had been exposed to candle and incense smoke and aerosol sprays, or had smoked cannabis. The results revealed the high concentration of organic air pollutants in inhaled air (maximum of 215 ng mL-1) and exhaled breath (maximum of 14.4 ng mL-1) and a correlation between the components in inhaled air and exhaled breath. Significantly, the findings further revealed that the developed NTD has enhanced breath-sample determinations, especially for polar compounds, which tend to remain trapped in breath droplets.
Source: ncbi 2