An LC-MS/MS Method for a Comprehensive Determination of Metabolites of BTEX Anaerobic Degradation in Bacterial Cultures and Groundwater

Simon Godin , Paweł Kubica , Anthony Ranchou-Peyruse , Isabelle Le Hecho , Delphine Patriarche , Guilhem Caumette , Joanna Szpunar , Ryszard Łobiński


BTEX (benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, and the different xylene isomers), known for carcinogenic and neurotoxic effects, are common environmental contaminants. The first step for the development of the bioremediation technologies is the detection of intense microbial degradation in contaminated waters in the quest for the most active bacterial strains. This requires the multispecies analysis for BTEX metabolites which are considered as markers of microbial degradation. A direct (50 µL injection) HPLC–electrospray MS/MS analytical method was developed for the simultaneous analysis of 11 BTEX metabolites (o-, m-, p-toluic, salicylic, benzoate, benzyl, and phenyl succinic acids, 2-(1-phenylethyl)-, 2-(2-methylbenzyl), and 2-(3-methylbenzyl)-, 2-(4-methyl benzyl)-succinic acids) in bacterial cultures and ground waters down to 0.1 ng/mL. The optimization of the chromatographic conditions allowed for the resolution of position isomers of toluic and methylbenzyl-succinic acids. The stability of the analytes during sample storage tested in different conditions showed the instability of some of them when stored at room temperature. The feasibility of the method was demonstrated by the detection of all the investigated metabolites in a water sample of a deep aquifer hosting natural gas storage. A model laboratory study emphasized the importance of 2-(2-methylbenzyl)-succinic acid as a marker of anaerobic microbial degradation.
Author Simon Godin
Simon Godin,,
, Paweł Kubica
Paweł Kubica,,
, Anthony Ranchou-Peyruse
Anthony Ranchou-Peyruse,,
, Isabelle Le Hecho
Isabelle Le Hecho,,
, Delphine Patriarche
Delphine Patriarche,,
, Guilhem Caumette
Guilhem Caumette,,
, Joanna Szpunar
Joanna Szpunar,,
, Ryszard Łobiński - Universite de Pau et des Pays de L'Adour
Ryszard Łobiński,,
Journal seriesWater, [Water (Switzerland)], ISSN 2073-4441
Issue year2020
Pages1869_1 - 1869_16
Publication size in sheets93.45
Article number1869
Keywords in English LC MS/MS; BTEX; metabolites; anaerobic bacteria; groundwater
ASJC Classification1104 Aquatic Science; 1303 Biochemistry; 3305 Geography, Planning and Development; 2312 Water Science and Technology
Languageen angielski
water-12-01869-v4.pdf 3.19 MB
Score (nominal)70
Score sourcejournalList
ScoreMinisterial score = 70.0, 14-09-2020, ArticleFromJournal
Publication indicators Scopus SNIP (Source Normalised Impact per Paper): 2017 = 1.007; WoS Impact Factor: 2018 = 2.524 (2) - 2018=2.721 (5)
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