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Method of analysis and quality-assurance practices by the U. S. Geological Survey Organic Geochemistry Research Group—Determination of four selected mosquito insecticides and a synergist in water using liquid-liquid extraction and gas chromatography/mass

December 1, 2001

A method of analysis and quality-assurance practices were developed for the determination of four mosquito insecticides (malathion, metho-prene, phenothrin, and resmethrin) and one synergist (piperonyl butoxide) in water. The analytical method uses liquid-liquid extraction (LLE) and gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS). Good precision and accuracy were demonstrated in reagent water, urban surface water, and ground water. The mean accuracies as percentages of the true compound concentrations from water samples spiked at 10 and 50 nanograms per liter ranged from 68 to 171 percent, with standard deviations in concentrations of 27 nanograms per liter or less. The method detection limit for all compounds was 5.9 nanograms per liter or less for 247-milliliter samples. This method is valuable for acquiring information about the fate and transport of these mosquito insecticides and one synergist in water.