Caffeine in Your Drink: Natural or Synthetic?
ABSTRACT Owing to possible adulteration and health concerns, it is important to discriminate between natural and synthetic food ingredients. A new method for compound-specific isotope analysis (CSIA) by coupling high-temperature reversed-phase liquid chromatography to isotope ratio mass spectrometry (HT-RPLC/IRMS) was developed for discrimination of natural and synthetic caffeine contained in all types of drinks. The analytical parameters such as stationary phase, column inner diameter, and column temperature were optimized for the separation of caffeine directly from drinks (without extraction). On the basis of the carbon isotope analysis of 42 natural caffeine samples including coffee beans, tea leaves, guaraná powder, and maté leaves, and 20 synthetic caffeine samples from different sources by high-temperature reversed-phase liquid chromatography coupled to isotope ratio mass spectrometry, it is concluded that there are two distinguishable groups of caffeine δ(13)C-values: one between -25 and -32‰ for natural caffeine, and the other between -33 and -38‰ for synthetic caffeine. Isotope analysis by HT-RPLC/IRMS has been applied to identify the caffeine source in 38 drinks. Four mislabeled products were detected due to added but nonlabeled synthetic caffeine with δ(13)C-values lower than -33‰. This work is the first application of HT-RPLC/IRMS to real-world food samples, which showed several advantages: simple sample preparation (only dilution), high throughput, long-term column stability, and high precision of δ(13)C-value. Thus, HT-RPLC/IRMS can be a very promising tool in stable isotope analysis of nonvolatile compounds.
- Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry 9(4). DOI:10.1021/jf60116a015 · 3.11 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: A new procedure to determine individual sugar (sucrose, glucose, and fructose) 13C isotope ratios, using liquid chromatography-isotope ratio mass spectrometry (HPLC-IRMS), has been developed to improve isotopic methods devoted to the study of honey authenticity. For this purpose 79 commercial honey samples from various origins were analyzed. Values of delta13Choney ranged from -14.2 to -27.2", and delta13Cprotein ranged from -23.6 to -26.9". A very strong correlation is observed between the individual sugar 13C ratios, which are altered in the event of sugar addition, even at low levels. The use of Deltadelta13C [fruct-glu], Deltadelta13C [fruct-suc], and Deltadelta13C [gluc-suc] systematic differences as an authenticity criterion permits the sugar addition [C3, beet sugar; or C4, cane sugar, cane syrup, isoglucose syrup, and high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS)] to be reliably detected (DL = 1-10%). The new procedure has advantages over existing methods in terms of analysis time and sensitivity. In addition, it is the first isotopic method developed that allows beet sugar addition detection.Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry 01/2007; 54(26):9719-27. DOI:10.1021/jf062067x · 3.11 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: A novel procedure was established for the simultaneous characterization of wine glycerol and ethanol (13)C/(12)C isotope ratio, using liquid chromatography/isotope ratio mass spectrometry (LC-IRMS). Several parameters influencing separation of glycerol and ethanol from wine matrix were optimized. Results obtained for 35 Spanish samples exposed no significant differences and very strong correlations (r = 0.99) between the glycerol (13)C/(12)C ratios obtained by an alternative method (gas chromatography/isotope ratio mass spectrometry) and the proposed new methodology, and between the ethanol (13)C/(12)C ratios obtained by the official method (elemental analyzer/isotope ratio mass spectrometry) and the proposed new methodology. The accuracy of the proposed method varied from 0.01 to 0.19 per thousand, and the analytical precision was better than 0.25 per thousand. The new developed LC-IRMS method it is the first isotopic method that allows (13)C/(12)C determination of both analytes in the same run directly from a liquid sample with no previous glycerol or ethanol isolation, overcoming technical difficulties associated with complex sample treatment and improving in terms of simplicity and speed.Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry 12/2009; 58(2):722-8. DOI:10.1021/jf9029095 · 3.11 Impact Factor