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Electrophoresis. 2002 Sep;23(17):2904-12.

Determination of glycoalkaloids and relative aglycones by nonaqueous capillary electrophoresis coupled with electrospray ionization-ion trap mass spectrometry.

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Dipartimento di Chimica, Università degli Studi della Basilicata, Potenza, Italy.


Glycoalkaloids are naturally occurring nitrogen-containing compounds present in many species of the family Solanaceae, including cultivated and wild potatoes (Solanum spp.), tomatoes (Lycopersicon spp.), etc. These compounds have pharmacological and toxicological effects on humans due to their significant anticholinesterase activity and disruption of cell membranes. Herein is reported the development of a capillary electrophoresis (CE) method using nonaqueous (NA) separation solutions in combination with ion trap mass spectrometry (MS and MS/MS) detection for the identification and quantification of glycoalkaloids and their relative aglycones. A mixture 90:10 v/v of MeCN-MeOH containing 50 mM ammonium acetate and 1.2 M acetic acid (applied voltage of 25.5 kV) was selected as a good compromise for the separation and detection of these compounds. The electrospray MS measurements were carried out in the positive ionization mode using a coaxial sheath liquid, methanol-water (1:1) with 1% of acetic acid at a flow rate of 2.5 microL/min. Under optimized experimental conditions, the predominant ion was the protonated molecular ion ([M+H](+)) of solanidine (m/z = 398), tomatidine (m/z = 416), chaconine (m/z = 852), solanine (m/z = 868), and tomatine (m/z = 1034). MS/MS experiments were carried out systematically by changing the relative collisional energy and monitoring the intensities of the fragment ions that were not high enough to allow better quantification than with the mother ions. The method was used for analyzing glycoalkaloids in potato extracts.

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