SIMULTANEOUS ANALYSIS OF BIOLOGICAL INDICATORS OF EXPOSURE TO ETHYLBENZENE, STYRENE, TOLUENE AND XYLENE SOLVENTS IN URINE BY HPLC-UV
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A method for simultaneous analysis of phenylglyoxylic (PGA), mandelic (MA), hippuric (HA), orto-, meta- and para-methylhippuric (o-, m- and p-MHA) acids in urine, by high performance liquid chromatography with UV detection was developed and validated. The substances are biotransformation products used as biological indicators to assess the exposure of workers, respectively, to ethylbenzene, styrene, toluene and xylene. The urinary metabolites were separated using a C18 column and a mixture of 5 mM phosphate buffer pH 2.6:acetonitrile (92:8, v/v) as mobile phase. Urine samples were extracted with dichloromethane: ethyl acetate (70:30, v/v). The method used phenacetin as internal standard and was linear in the interval of 100-500 mu g mL(-1) for PGA and MA and 150-700 mu g mL(-1) for HA and MHA. The detection limits in mu g mL(-1), were 19.8 for PGA, 1.7 for MA, 4.1 for HA, 3.9 for o-MHA, 3.3 for m-MHA and 7.3 for p-MHA. Intra- and inter-assay precisions (as relative standard deviation) were all less than 15% and accuracy (as relative standard error) did not exceed 12.3%. The recovery was higher than 65% for all metabolites. The developed method will be applied to biological evaluation of workers exposure to these solvents.