The group develops analytical methods, based on both targeted and untargeted strategies by mass spectrometry, to characterise markers of pollution and the impact of organic contaminants on human health or environmental sentinel species.

TRACES develops innovative methods involving improvements at each step of the analytical protocol or original coupling: sampling, sample preparation, chromatographic separation, detection by mass spectrometry and data analysis (miniaturized passive sampler, dSPE, SPE-LC-MS/MS online, µ-QuEChERS, SALLE, nano-LC-MS/MS, MS/MS/MS, LC- or GC-HRMS…).

  • Concerning targeted analysis, the group quantifies trace and ultra-trace of priority or emerging contaminants, i.e. drugs, hormones, pesticides, endocrine disruptors, and their transformation products or metabolites in environmental matrices (water, soil, sediment, sludge, sentinel species, …) and biological fluids (blood, urine, serum, tissues…). The developments aim at lowering the limits of quantification, enhancing selectivity and/or reducing the initial sample quantity.
  • For the detection and identification of biomarkers or markers of exposures, the group develops analytical methodologies based on comprehensive and untargeted analysis or metabolomic approaches, by LC- or GC-HRMS, associated with the appropriate statistical analysis of the data (open source manufacturer or software package under Galaxy environment).

Method’s optimizations and the combination of both targeted and non-targeted analytical strategies allow a better understanding of the Environment-Health interactions, concept known as Exposome, for environmental and health issues.


Recent highlights

  • Contribution to a national study on the occurrence of biocides and surfactants in aquatic environments – EMNAT (AFB)
  • Assessment of the bioaccumulation and metabolisation of emerging pharmaceutical compounds and pesticides in sentinel species – DOREMIPHARM (ANSM) and MAIIA (Rhone-Alpes Region)
  • Development of a metabolomic approach to study the impact of pharmaceutical compounds on small aquatic invertebrates, at individual level – ANABIOTE (CNRS) and collaboration with VEOLIA
  • Assessment of the impact of plastic additives on the development of breath cancer – PLASTOC (INSERM)
  • Development of new passive samplers to improve the analysis of groundwaters – FROG (ANR)

Contact: Dr Emmanuelle VULLIET, Group leader – emmanuelle.vulliet[@]