Quantitative Silylation Speciations of Primary Phenylalkyl Amines, Including Amphetamine and 3,4-Methylenedioxyamphetamine Prior to Their Analysis by GC/MS

A novel, quantitative trimethylsilylation approach derivatizing 11 primary phenylalkyl amines (PPAAs), including amphetamine (A) and 3,4-methylenedioxyamphetamine (MDA), was noted. Triggering the fully derivatized ditrimethylsilyl (diTMS) species with the N-methyl-N-(trimethylsilyl)-trifluoroacetamide (MSTFA) reagent, a new principle was recognized followed by GC/MS. In the course of method optimization, the complementary impact of solvents (acetonitrile, ACN; ethyl acetate, ETAC; pyridine, PYR) and catalysts (trimethylchlorosilane, TMCS; trimethyliodosilane, TMIS) was studied: the role of solvent and catalyst proved to be equally crucial. Optimum, proportional, huge responses were obtained with the MSTFA/PYR = 2/1–9/1 (v/v) reagent applying catalysts; A and MDA needed the TMIS, while the rest of PPAAs provided the diTMS products also with TMCS. Similar to derivatives generated with hexamethyldisilazane and perfluorocarboxylic acid (HMDS and PFCA) (Molnár et al. Anal. Chem. 2015, 87, 848−852), the fully silylated PPAAs offer several advantages. Both of our methods save time and cost by allowing for direct injection of analytes into the column; this is in stark contrast with the requirement to evaporate acid anhydrides by nitrogen prior to their injection. Efficiences of the novel catalyzed trimethylsilylation (MSTFA) and our recently introduced (now, for A and MDA extended) acylation principle were contrasted. Catalyzed trimethylsilylation led to diTMS derivatives resulting in on average a 1.7 times larger response compared to the corresponding acylated species. Catalyzed trimethylsilylation of PPAAs, A, and MDA were characterized with retention, mass fragmentation, and analytical performance properties (R2, LOQ values). The practical utility of ditrimethylsilyation was shown by analyzing A in urine and mescaline (MSC) in cactus samples.