Several molecularly imprinted polymers (MIPs) have been synthesized for the first time using various synthetic cannabinoids (JWH007, JWH015 and JWH098) as template molecules. Ethylene dimethacrylate (EDMA) was used as a functional monomer for all cases. Similarly, divinylbenzene (DVB) and 2,2′-azobisisobutyronitrile (AIBN) were used as cross-linker and initiator, respectively. The prepared MIPs have been fully characterized and evaluated as new selective adsorbents for micro-solid phase extraction (μ-SPE) of synthetic cannabinoids in urine. The developed MIP-μ-SPE devices consisted of a polypropylene (PP) porous membrane containing the adsorbent (novel porous membrane protected micro-solid phase extraction based on a cone-shaped device) for operating in batch mode, which allowed a fast and integrated extraction-cleanup procedure. High performance liquid chromatography–tandem mass spectrometry (HPLC–MS/MS) was used for quantifying the analytes after MIP-μ-SPE. The best performances were obtained for MIPs prepared from JWH015 as a template. Optimum loading conditions were found to be urine pH of 5.0 and adsorption time of 8.0 min under mechanical (orbital-horizontal) stirring at 100 rpm. The composition of the eluting solution consisted of 75:20:5 heptane/2-propanol/ammonium hydroxide. The elution was assisted by ultrasounds (37 kHz, 325 W) for 8.0 min. In addition, studies regarding selectivity have also been addressed for several drugs of abuse under optimized loading/adsorption conditions. Validation of the method showed good precision and analytical recovery by intra-day and inter-day assays (RSD values lower than 7 and 10% for intra-day and inter-day precision, and within the 83–100% range for intra-day and inter-day analytical recovery).
- Analytical Chemistry
- High performance liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry
- Molecularly imprinted polymer
- Organic Chemistry
- Synthetic cannabinoids
- micro-solid phase extraction
- porous membrane-protected