12703622659?profile=RESIZE_180x180The “designer drug” nature of sildenafil-type adulterants in dietary supplements means that analytical reference standards are not always available. In this study (purchase required), a novel "standard-free detection of adulteration" (SFDA) method was proposed. “Designer” phosphodiesterase-5 inhibitor derivatives were used as a test case. After analysis by quadrupole coupled time of flight-tandem mass spectrometry detection and multivariable statistics, six common fragment ions were chosen to indicate whether adulteration was present or not, while 20 characteristic fragment ions indicated whether adulteration was by nitrogen-containing heterocycles or by anilines. Quantitative methods targeting these fragments were then conducted by high-performance liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry. The authors conclude that this strategy allows for a quick determination of dietary supplement adulteration without any need for standard materials, improving the efficacy of food safety testing.

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