Determination of Selenium in Bovine Semen by ICP-MS Using Formic Acid for Sample Preparation

Determination of Se by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) can be difficult due to spectral interferences; however, these interferences can be eliminated by using collision-reaction interface (CRI) technology. A simple and fast procedure for determination of total Se concentration in bovine semen by ICP-MS after sample solubilization with diluted formic acid is here proposed. Formic acid caused an increase of up to 50% in selenium net signals and the maximum gain was obtained at 10% v v-1 formic acid solution. The optimized nebulizer gas flow rates were 1.05 and 0.95 L min-1, and radio frequency applied power were 1.3 and 1.4 kW without and with CRI, respectively. Microwave-assisted acid digestion was also implemented in the preparation of semen sample for comparison of results. No statistical differences between these sample preparation strategies at 95% confidence level (t-test) were observed for 76Se+, 77Se+, 78Se+ and 82Se+ without using CRI and 82Se+ with CRI.