Simplified analysis of glyphosate and aminomethylphosphonic acid in water, vegetation and soil by liquid chromatography–tandem mass spectrometry




There is a need for a simple, fast, efficient and sensitive method for analysis of glyphosate and its degradate aminomethylphosphonic acid (AMPA) in diverse matrices such as water, vegetation and soil.


Aqueous extracts from water, vegetation and soil were passed through reverse-phase and cation-exchange columns and directly injected into a tandem mass spectrometer using only a guard column for separation. Extraction efficiencies from the three matrices were >80% for both glyphosate and AMPA. The method reporting levels (MRLs) for glyphosate in water, vegetation and soil were 3.04 µg L−1, 0.05 mg kg−1 and 0.37 mg kg−1 respectively. AMPA MRLs were 5.06 µg L−1 for water, 0.08 mg kg−1 for vegetation and 0.61 mg kg−1 for soil.


A validated, simple and efficient liquid chromatography–tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) method for routine analysis of glyphosate and AMPA in water, vegetation and soil that uses minimal sample handling and clean-up will facilitate the additional environmental research needed to address the continuing concerns related to increasing glyphosate use. Published 2013. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the USA.