Estimation of the breakthrough volume of selected steroids for C-18 solid-phase extraction sorbent using retention data from micro-thin layer chromatography


Correspondence: Dr. Katarzyna Bielicka-Daszkiewicz, pl. M. Skłodowskiej-Curie 2, 60-965 Poznań, Poland


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SPE method is a very popular technique, and is commonly used for the prepurification, concentration, and isolation of different organic compounds from variable matrices. In this work, the optimization of SPE process was carried out. The breakthrough volume of solid sorbents based on octadecylsilane was determined and three methods were compared: (1) calculation one – the breakthrough volume was calculated using retention factor k determined with micro-TLC method, frontal analysis – (2) breakthrough volume was determined as volume of whole elution peak, and (3) breakthrough volume was determined as the center of peak gravity. For calculation method, the k values of key estrogens and progestogens were derived from the micro-TLC experiment reported previously. By combining these three methods, we can point the start of elution, the maximum concentration of analyte in eluate, and the whole eluent volume, which is necessary to achieve an appropriate selectivity and high extraction recovery. Proposed calculation method allows to estimate the beginning of the steroid peak, when the analyte appears in the eluate flowing from the sorbent. Such observation advances the SPE optimization protocol that was described before and was based on the correlation between raw kSPE and kmicro-TLC data.