Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are fluorocarbon compounds in which hydrogen atoms have been partly or entirely replaced by fluorine. They have a very wide range of applications, while they are persistent in the environment and exhibit bioaccumulative and toxic properties. Neither chemical nor biological mechanisms can decompose PFAS due to their strong C-F bonds. PFAS have shown adverse effects on various organisms, even at trace levels. Accordingly, highly sensitive and selective analytical methods are required for their tracing in biological and environmental matrices. The physicochemical properties of PFAS like surfactant characteristics and high-water solubility are unique and different from other known pollutants. Accordingly, the number of articles on the analysis of PFAS is less than the other well-known contaminants. The routine PFAS sample preparation methods (like solvent extraction) coupled with chromatographic systems, face challenges such as high limits of detection, need for laborious derivatization, limited selectivity, and expensive instrumentation. Recent efforts to address these limitations have aroused considerable attention to the development of microextraction techniques, which are consistent with the principles of green chemistry and can be made easily portable and automated. Moreover, these methods have shown enough sensitivity and selectivity for the analysis of different analytes (including PFAS) in a wide range of samples with different matrices. This research aims to review the microextraction methods and detection techniques, applied for the sample pretreatment of PFAS in various matrices, along with a critical discussion of the challenges and potential future trends.
Authors: Vahid Jalili, Abdullah Barkhordari, Brett Paull, Alireza Ghiasvand
; Full Source: Critical reviews in analytical chemistry 2021 Aug 20;1-20.