Mass spectrometry of the photolysis of sulfonylurea herbicides in Prairie waters.Mass Spectrom Rev. 2010 Jul-Aug; 29(4):593-605.MS
This review of mass spectrometry of sulfonylurea herbicides includes a focus on studies relevant to Canadian Prairie waters. Emphasis is given to data gaps in the literature for the rates of photolysis of selected sulfonylurea herbicides in different water matrices. Specifically, results are evaluated for positive ion electrospray tandem mass spectrometry with liquid chromatography separation for the study of the photolysis of chlorsulfuron, tribenuron-methyl, thifensulfuron-methyl, metsulfuron-methyl, and ethametsulfuron-methyl. LC-MS/MS is shown to be the method of choice for the quantification of sulfonylurea herbicides with instrumental detection limits ranging from 1.3 to 7.2 pg (on-column). Tandem mass spectrometry coupled with the use of authentic standards likewise has proven to be well suited for the identification of transformation products. To date, however, the power of time-of-flight MS and ultrahigh resolution MS has not been exploited fully for the identification of unknown photolysis products. Dissipation of the herbicides under natural sunlight fit pseudo-first-order kinetics with half-life values ranging from 4.4 to 99 days. For simulated sunlight, radiation wavelengths shorter than 400 nm are required to induce significant photolytic reactions. The correlation between field dissipation studies and laboratory photolysis experiments suggests that photolysis is a major pathway for the dissipation of some sulfonylurea herbicides in natural Prairie waters.