Volatile sulfur compounds in Cheddar cheese determined by headspace solid-phase microextraction and gas chromatograph-pulsed flame photometric detection

J Chromatogr A. 2005 Feb 25;1066(1-2):149-57. doi: 10.1016/j.chroma.2005.01.027.


The aim of this study was to develop a methodology for the analysis of volatile sulfur compounds (VSCs) in Cheddar cheese. Solid-phase microextraction (SPME) was employed to extract VSCs from the cheese matrix using a CAR-PDMS fiber. This extraction method was combined with gas chromatography-pulsed flame photometric detection (GC-PFPD) to achieve high sensitivity for sulfur compounds. The impact of extraction parameters, including time, temperature and sample size, was evaluated to determine the best conditions to analyze sulfur compounds in Cheddar cheese. Hydrogen sulfide, methanethiol, and dimethyl sulfide were found to constitute the majority of the overall sulfur profile while dimethyl disulfide and dimethyl trisulfide were present in lesser amounts. Artifact formation of volatile sulfur compounds was found to be minimal. Two commercial cheese samples were analyzed and differences in sulfur content were observed. Overall, SPME-GC-PFPD was found to be a highly sensitive technique for the analysis of sulfur compounds in Cheddar cheese.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Artifacts
  • Cheese / analysis*
  • Chromatography, Gas / methods*
  • Photometry
  • Sulfur Compounds / analysis*
  • Temperature
  • Time Factors
  • Volatilization


  • Sulfur Compounds