Ion suppression in analysis of tetracyclines in feed was studied. The conventional analysis consists of a liquid extraction followed by a clean-up step using solid phase extraction (SPE) technique and analysis of the tetracyclines by liquid chromatography and mass spectrometric detection. Various strategies for extraction and cleanup were tested in the present work, and the effectiveness to decrease the ion suppression on the MS/MS signals was evaluated. Four sample treatment methods were tested with five different feed samples. Extraction solvents tested were McIlvaine buffer and a mixture of McIlvaine buffer dichloromethane (3¿:¿1). SPE cartridges for cleanup were Oasis HLB, Oasis MCX, and Oasis MAX. The effectiveness of the methods was evaluated in terms of decreasing the ion suppression effect but also of decreasing the variability of ion suppression between samples. The method that provided the most satisfactory results involved a clean-up step based on SPE using mixed-mode cation exchange cartridges (Oasis MCX).
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