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Jef Focant

Jef Focant
University of Liège, Belgium

Jean-François (Jef) Focant was born in 1974 in Belgium.  He obtained his Master degree in Chemistry at the University of Liège in 1998.  He completed a PhD in Sciences at the same university in 2002. His thesis focused on the development of rapid analytical methods for the measurement of dioxins and related compounds in biological samples (Prof E. De Pauw). Coupling of the sample preparation steps (pressurized liquid extraction (PLE) and solid phase extraction (SPE)) to multi-column clean-up and further automation of the process conducted to high sample throughput methods. Gas chromatography (GC) coupled to mass spectrometry (MS) was studied as the congener separation and measurement tools. Investigated hyphenated analytical instruments consisted in high resolution GC (HRGC), fast GC (FGC), and comprehensive two-dimensional GC (GCxGC) coupled to either high resolution sector MS (HRMS), quadrupole ion storage MS (QISTMS), and time-of-flight MS (TOFMS). The newly developed methods are used to analyze human serum and milk in large scale biomonitoring programs as well as in food control.He focused his post doctoral work (2002-2003) on multi-group analytes profiling using GCxGC coupled to TOFMS while working at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta, GA (Dr D.G. Patterson, Jr.). This approach was used to measure dioxins, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), organochlorine pesticides (OCPs), and polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) in human serum and milk. He is currently a research associate at the interfaculty Center for Analysis of Trace Residue (CART) at the University of Liège where he continues the studies on hyphenated emerging instruments for ultra-trace analysis.  He is the author of 21 publications and co-author of 10 publications in international journals as well as 1 book chapter on the use of GCxGC-TOFMS for human biomonitoring. Other scientific activities include temporary expert for the world health organization (WHO), invited expert for the European food safety authority (EFSA), cooperative teaching missions in Cuba, MS training, and consultancy in the field of ultra-trace analyses.

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