Environmental analytical methods

Determination of paraquat in water samples using a sensitive fluorescent probe titration method

Feihu Yao , Hailong Liu , Guangquan Wang , Liming Du , Xiaofen Yin , Yunlong Fu


Received July 15, 2012,Revised December 13, 2012, Accepted , Available online June 06, 2013

Volume ,2013,Pages 1245-1251

Paraquat (PQ), a nonselective herbicide, is non-fluorescent in aqueous solutions. Thus, its determination through direct fluorescent methods is not feasible. The supramolecular inclusion interaction of PQ with cucurbit[7]uril was studied by a fluorescent probe titration method. Significant quenching of the fluorescence intensity of the cucurbit[7]uril-coptisine fluorescent probe was observed with the addition of PQ. A new fluorescent probe titration method with high selectivity and sensitivity at the ng/mL level was developed to determine PQ in aqueous solutions with good precision and accuracy based on the significant quenching of the supramolecular complex fluorescence intensity. The proposed method was successfully used in the determination of PQ in lake water, tap water, well water, and ditch water in an agricultural area, with recoveries of 96.73% to 105.77%. The fluorescence quenching values (ΔF) showed a good linear relationship with PQ concentrations from 1.0×10-8 to 1.2× 10-5 mol/L with a detection limit of 3.35×10-9 mol/L. In addition, the interaction models of the supramolecular complexes formed between the host and the guest were established using theoretical calculations. The interaction mechanism between the cucurbit[7]uril and PQ was confirmed by 1H NMR spectroscopy.

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