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Third-party-funded project

LC-MS/MS-Analysis of heterocyclic aromatic amines (HAA) in food

Project management at the University of Würzburg:

Participating scientists:

By means of LC-MS/MS it was the objective of the project to develop a structurally related, exact qualitative and quantitative determination of HAA in food and model systems, in order to provide reliable data for future risk evaluation. HPLC- and ESI-MS conditions were developed, resulting in SRM as the most suitable method. In model studies carried out with 16 relevant HAA, detection limits in the lower ng/ml area were reached. The use of deuterated standards allowed the application of isotope analysis for the quantification of PhiP and MeIQx. The other HAA under study were quantified by the traditional standard addition method. The newly developed technique was used for the qualitative and quantitative determination of HAA in food and process flavours. In addition, studies of raw materials were also carried out including the analysis of type and rate of HAA formation. The lowest amounts of HAA were found in wines (< 0.1 ng/g); thus, they are 100-1000fold lower than those found in meat products which showed with 0.1 to 5.3 ng/g PhIP and 0.1 to 5.2 ng/g MeIQx, compared with the other foods under study, the highest amounts of HAA. In sauces and soups, HAA were found from 0.1 to 1.9 ng/g. Other food contained traces of HAA or was HAA-free. In process flavours (produced at < 160°C) 0.1 to 12 ng/g HAA was determined. Considering their dosage in the final food, it can be concluded that no aditional risk for the consumer is to be expected by the use of these products. A further aim of the project was reached by the development of a routine HRGC-MS method.

Key words:
    Heterocyclic aromatic amines
    Process flavours
    Risk evaluation
    Consumer protection

Projekt period: from 01.1996 to 05.1998

Funding institution:
Bund ,Granting date: 01.11.1995


Research area