Tropical Journal of Pharmaceutical Research

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Reliability of graphite furnace atomic absorption spectrometry as alternative method for trace analysis of arsenic in natural medicinal products

Reem Saadi Khalid, A.B.M. Helaluddin, Reem Saadi Khalid, Mohamed Alaama, Abdualrahman M. Abdualkader, Abdulrazak Kasmuri, Syed Atif Abbas


Purpose: To evaluate the comparative efficiency of graphite furnace atomic absorption spectrometry (GFAAS) and hydride generation atomic absorption spectrometry (HGAAS) for trace analysis of arsenic (As) in natural herbal products (NHPs).

Method: Arsenic analysis in natural herbal products and standard reference material was conducted using atomic absorption spectrometry (AAS), namely, hydride generation ASSAAS (HGAAS) and graphite furnace (GFAAS). The samples were digested with HNO3–H2O2 in a ratio of 4:1 using microwave-assisted acid digestion. The methods were validated with the aid of the standard reference material 1515 Apple Leaves (SRM) from NIST

Results: Mean recovery of three different samples of NHPs, using HGAAS and GFAAS, ranged from 89.3 - 91.4 %, and 91.7 - 93.0 %, respectively. The difference between the two methods was insignificant. A (P= 0.5), B (P=0.4) and C (P=0.88) Relative standard deviation (RSD) RSD, i.e., precision was 2.5 - 6.5 % and 2.3 - 6.7 % using HGAAS and GFAAS techniques, respectively. Recovery of arsenic in SRM was 98 and 102 % by GFAAS and HGAAS, respectively.

Conclusion: GFAAS demonstrates acceptable levels of precision and accuracy. Both techniques possess comparable accuracy and repeatability. Thus, the two methods are recommended as an alternative approach for trace analysis of arsenic in natural herbal products.

Keywords: Arsenic, Graphite furnace atomic absorption spectrometer (GFAAS), Hydride generation atomic absorption spectrometer (HGAAS), Natural herbal products
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