Towards harmonised criteria in quality assurance and quality control of suspect and non-target LC-HRMS analytical workflows for screening of emerging contaminants in human biomonitoring

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CABALLERO-CASERO Noelia BELOVA Lidia VERVLIET Philippe ANTIGNAC Jean-Philippe CASTANO Argelia DEBRAUWER Laurent LOPEZ Marta Esteban HUBER Carolin KLÁNOVÁ Jana KRAUSS Martin LOMMEN Arjen MOL Hans G. J. OBERACHER Herbert PARDO Olga PRICE Elliott James REINSTADLER Vera VITALE Chiara Maria VAN NUIJS Alexander L. N COVACI Adrian

Year of publication 2021
Type Article in Periodical
Magazine / Source TrAC Trends in Analytical Chemistry
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Science

Keywords Quality control-quality assurance measures; Framework for analytical performance; Emerging compounds; Human matrices; Suspect and non-target screening; HBM4EU
Description Although the exposure assessment of chemicals of emerging concern (CECs) has taken a decisive step forward through advances in (bio)informatics, statistics, and the development of highly sophisticated analytical instruments, the lack of standardisation and harmonisation of analytical workflows and method performance assessment for suspect and non-target screening hampers the interpretation of results, their comparability and thus, its transmission to policymakers. To date, unlike in other research fields such as forensics or food analysis, there is a lack of guidelines for non-target analysis in human risk assessment and quality assurance and quality control (QA/QC) protocols. Moreover, the majority of efforts have been focused on the development and implementation of QA/QC actions for data acquisition, data analysis and mining, largely neglecting the sample preparation necessary for determination of CECs by suspect and non-target screening methods. In this article, we propose a set of QA/QC measures that covers sampling, sample preparation and data acquisition, as an aspect of work conducted within the European Biomonitoring for Europe initiative (HBM4EU). These measures include the use of standardised terminology and the implementation of dedicated QA/QC actions in each stage of the analytical process. Moreover, a framework for the analytical performance assessment has been developed for the first time for the identification of CECs in human samples by suspect and non-target approaches. Adoption of the actions proposed here for the identifi-cation of CECs in human matrices can significantly improve the comparability of reported results and contribute to the (challenging) Exposome research field.
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