Sampling and analysis of volatile organic compounds in bovine breath by solid-phase microextraction and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry

Journal of Chromatography. a
Jarett P SpinhirneNorbert K Chirase


A relatively noninvasive method consisting of a face mask sampling device, solid-phase microextraction (SPME) fibers, and a gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) for the identification of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in bovine breath was developed. Breath of three morbid steers with respiratory tract infections and three healthy steers were sampled seven times in 19 days for 15 min at each sampling. The breath VOCs adsorbed on the divinylbenzene (DVB)-Carboxen-polydimethyl siloxane (PDMS) 50/30 microm SPME fibers were transported to a laboratory GC-MS system for separation and identification with an in-house spectral library of standard chemicals. A total of 21 VOCs were detected, many of them for the first time in cattle breath. Statistical analyses using Chi-square test on the frequency of detection of each VOC in each group was performed. The presence of acetaldehyde (P < or = 0.05) and decanal (P < or = 0.10) were associated more with clinically morbid steers while methyl acetate, heptane, octanal, 2,3-butadione, hexanoic acid, and phenol were associated with healthy steers at P < or = 0.10. The results suggest that noninvasive heath screening using breath analyses could become a useful diagnostic tool for anima...Continue Reading


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