MALDI/TOF/MS analysis of isocyanates and other hazardous workplace chemicals

Mass spectrometry has long been used to analyse samples taken in the workplace, and can be combined with other techniques to increase sensitivity, selectivity and accuracy. The work summarised in this report examines the application of the recently developed Matrix Assisted Laser Desorption Ionization/ time-of-flight/ mass spectrometry (MALDI/TOF/MS) technique to the analysis of isocyanates and biocides. Isocyanates were measured on filters (to represent air monitoring) and as isocyanate/protein conjugates (representing biological monitoring). Selected biocides bound to soil samples were analysed by MALDI/TOF/MS as examples of chemicals linked to more complex matrices: this use of MALDI/TOF/MS as an extraction process is a novel application of the technique.

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