In the last decade, the development and adoption of greener and sustainable microextraction techniques have been proved to be an effective alternative to classical sample preparation procedures. In this review, 10 commercially available solid-phase microextraction systems are presented, with special attention to the appraisal of their analytical, bioanalytical, and environmental engineering. This review provides an overview of the challenges and achievements in the application of fully automated miniaturized sample preparation methods in analytical laboratories. Both theoretical and practical aspects of these environment-friendly preparation approaches are discussed. The application of chemometrics in method development is also discussed. We are convinced that green analytical chemistry will be really useful in the years ahead. The application of cheap, fast, automated, “clever”, and environmentally safe procedures to environmental, clinical, and food analysis will improve significantly the quality of the analytical data.
Sample pretreatment is the first and the most important step of an analytical procedure. In routine analysis, liquid–liquid microextraction (LLE) is the most widely used sample pre-treatment technique, whose goal is to isolate the target analytes, provide enrichment, with cleanup to lower the chemical noise, and enhance the signal. The use of extensive volumes of hazardous organic solvents and production of large amounts of waste make LLE procedures unsuitable for modern, highly automated laboratories, expensive, and environmentally unfriendly. In the past two decades, liquid-phase microextraction (LPME) was introduced to overcome these drawbacks. Thanks to the need of only a few microliters of extraction solvent, LPME techniques have been widely adopted by the scientific community. The aim of this review is to report on the state-of-the-art LPME techniques used in gas and liquid chromatography. Attention was paid to the classification of the LPME operating modes, to the historical contextualization of LPME applications, and to the advantages of microextraction in methods respecting the value of green analytical chemistry. Technical aspects such as description of methodology selected in method development for routine use, specific variants of LPME developed for complex matrices, derivatization, and enrichment techniques are also discussed.