Given ongoing challenges in sample preparation and a lack of novel alternatives, is it time to give liquid-phase microextraction (LPME) a second chance?
Stig Pedersen-Bjergaard, Astrid Gjelstad, Knut Einar Rasmussen |
Complex aqueous samples, such as biological fluids and environmental water samples, are a real challenge for sample preparation. Current methods are marred by poor sample clean-up, dilution of the sample, and use of solvents. The discovery of liquid-phase microextraction (LPME) in the late 1990s offered a welcome alternative – so why hasn’t the technology been commercialized?
Liquid-phase microextraction (LPME) is a microextraction technique for sample preparation prior to chromatography, mass spectrometry, and electrophoresis – and it was first presented by our group in 1999 (1). The target analytes are extracted from an aqueous sample through a thin film of organic solvent, which is loaded as a supported liquid membrane (SLM) in the pores of a porous hollow fiber’s walls, and end up in an acceptor solution located inside the lumen of the hollow fiber (Figure 1).
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