At-line gas chromatographic-mass spectrometric analysis of fatty acid profiles of green microalgae using a direct thermal desorption interface

P. Blokker, R. Pel, L. Akoto, A. Udo, U.A.Th. Brinkman, R.J.J. Vreuls

    Research output: Contribution to journal/periodicalArticleScientificpeer-review

    Abstract

    Thermally assisted hydrolysis and methylation¯gas chromatography (THM¯GC) is an important tool to analyse fatty acid in complex matrices. Since THM¯GC has major drawbacks such as isomerisation when applied to fatty acids in natural matrices, a direct thermal desorption (DTD) interface and an incubation time of 30 min were used to circumvent these problems. Using vegetable oils such as sunflower oil and triarachidonin, the conversion of triglycerides into their fatty acid methyl esters (FAMEs) was investigated. The yields using a DTD (and trimethylsulfonium hydroxide as a reagent) were found to be similar or even higher than when applying a conventional off-line method, while the FAME profiles were identical. When the procedure was applied to analyse the FAME profiles of microbial cells in a methanolic or aqueous suspension, it was found that accurate profiles are obtained for such samples. Thus, the present approach opens the route to analyse fatty acids in microbial cells in a fully automated fashion, which will allow high sample throughput. [KEYWORDS: Fatty acids; Fatty acid methyl esters; Triglycerides]
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)191-201
    JournalJournal of Chromatography A
    Volume959
    Issue number1-2
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2002

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