Sensors (Basel). 2021 Mar 7;21(5):1861. doi: 10.3390/s21051861.
In current food safety monitoring, lateral flow immunoassays (LFIAs) are widely used for rapid food contaminant screening. Recent advances include smartphone readouts, offering semi-quantitative analysis of LFIAs with time, location, and data transfer in case of on-site testing. Following the screening, the next step in the EU regulations is confirmation by, e.g., liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). In this work, using direct analysis in real time ambient ionization and triple quadrupole MS/MS (DART-QqQ-MS/MS), we achieved rapid confirmation of the identity of the substance(s) causing the LFIA result. In the workflow proposed, an individual performs the (on-site) smartphone LFIA screening, and when the result is suspect, an identification LFIA (ID-LFIA) strip is developed with the same sample extract. The ID-LFIA can be dissociated and rapidly analyzed in a control laboratory with DART-QqQ-MS/MS. The ID-LFIA consists of multiple lines of monoclonal antibodies against the mycotoxin deoxynivalenol, acting as a bioaffinity trap. The ID-LFIA/DART-QqQ-MS/MS approach has been developed and validated, along with the screening smartphone LFIA, and has demonstrated its applicability by analyzing incurred and spiked samples. The developed approach has been critically compared with our previous direct electrospray ionization MS method and was found to provide highly complementary information on the total deoxynivalenol contamination in the sample.