A novel approach for monitoring of cyanobacterial toxins: development and evaluation of the passive sampler for microcystins

Anal Bioanal Chem. 2008 Feb;390(4):1167-72. doi: 10.1007/s00216-007-1785-y. Epub 2007 Dec 28.


We have investigated the ability of an integrative sampler for polar organic chemicals to sequestrate a group of common and highly hazardous cyanobacterial toxins-microcystins. In a pilot experiment, commercially available passive samplers were shown to effectively accumulate microcystins after 7 days' exposure in the field. To find the most efficient configuration for sequestration of microcystins, four different porous membranes (polycarbonate, polyester, polyethersulfone and nylon) and two sorbents (Oasis HLB and Bondesil-LMS) were evaluated in the laboratory experiments, where samplers of different configuration were exposed to microcystins (microcystin-RR and microcystin-LR) for 14 days under steady conditions. We observed differences in sampling rates and amounts of accumulated microcystins depending on the sampler configurations. The samplers constructed with the polycarbonate membrane and Oasis HLB sorbent (2.75 mg/cm2) provided the highest sampling rates (0.022 L/day for microcystin-RR and 0.017 L/day for microcystin-LR). To the best of our knowledge, the present study is the first reporting application of passive samplers for microcystins, and our results demonstrate the suitability of this tool for monitoring cyanotoxins in water.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid / instrumentation*
  • Cyanobacteria / chemistry*
  • Membranes, Artificial*
  • Microcystins / analysis*
  • Pilot Projects


  • Membranes, Artificial
  • Microcystins