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UPC develops method to detect DMFu in leather, footwear
31
May '11
Researchers at the Igualada School of Engineering (EEI), a school associated with the Universitat Politènica de Catalunya - UPC-Barcelona Tech, have developed a new analytical method that improves detection of dimethyl fumarate (DMFu) in leather and footwear.

The use of DMFu in consumer products is prohibited in the European Union as it causes allergic contact dermatitis. It has been detected in leather products made in Asia, including footwear and sofas. These products are monitored at the EEI by the Catalan Consumer Agency and other organizations and companies, following a method that enables the substance to be detected faster without destroying the sample.

This method, designed by researchers from the EEI, is based on detection using the headspace solid-phase micro extraction (HS-SPME) technique. Unlike more widespread methods of sample preparation, HS-SPME obtains samples from the product without damaging it. In addition, it reduces analysis time, minimises chemical use and laboratory waste, and provides greater detection sensitivity.

The samples in which DMFu is detected are analysed using an acetone extraction method and the substance is determined quantitatively in a gas chromatography system equipped with a mass detector.

Universitat Politènica de Catalunya - UPC

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