A rapid gas chromatography–tandem mass spectrometry (GC–MS/MS) analytical method was developedfor the simultaneous analysis of 7 estrogenic hormones (17-estradiol, 17-estradiol, estrone, mestranol,17-ethynylestradiol, levonorgestrel, estriol) and 5 androgenic hormones (testosterone, androsterone,etiocholanolone, dihydrotestosterone, androstenedione) in aqueous matrices. This method is unique inits inclusion of all 12 of these estrogens and androgens and is of particular value due to its very shortchromatographic run time of 15 min. The use of isotope dilution for all analytes ensures the accurate quantification, accounting for analytical variabilities that may be introduced during sample processing andinstrumental analysis. Direct isotopically labelled analogues were used for 8 of the 12 hormones and satisfactory isotope standards were identified for the remaining 4 hormones. Method detection levels (MDLs)were determined to describe analyte concentrations sufficient to provide a signal with 99% certaintyof detection. The established MDLs for most analytes were 1–5 ng L−1 in a variety of aqueous matrices.However, slightly higher MDLs were observed for etiocholanolone, androstenedione, testosterone, levonorgestrel and dihydrotestosterone in some aqueous matrices. Sample matrices were observed to haveonly a minor impact on MDLs and the method validation confirmed satisfactory method stability overintra-day and inter-day analyses of surface water and tertiary treated effluent samples.
- Drinking water
- Surface water