MIC - Reaching Lowest Element Concentrations for Pharmaceuticals

For the determination of ultra-trace concentrations of elemental impurities Microwave-induced oxygen combustion (MIC) represents a valuable option to deal with the given quantification limits of ICP-OES and ICP-MS analysis

1 Introduction

USP chapter <233> Elemental Impurities-Procedures describes enhanced sample preparation procedures prior to measurement with high-quality instrument-based analytical techniques (ICP-OES and ICP-MS). Microwave-assisted acid digestion is already mentioned as potential sample preparation technique in this chapter. Since acid digestion is performed with concentrated acids and ICP analyses suffer under significant signal suppression in combination with high acid concentrations dilution steps of the digestion solutions are required.

Hence for samples with a very low impurity load it could be difficult to exceed the quantification limit of the ICP.

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