Highly sensitive determination of ectoine and other compatible solutes by anion-exchange chromatography and pulsed amperometric detection

Riis, Volker; Maskow, Thomas; Babel, Wolfgang
September 2003
Analytical & Bioanalytical Chemistry;Sep2003, Vol. 377 Issue 1, p203
Academic Journal
In saline media prokaryotes compensate for the osmotic pressure of the surrounding medium by producing osmolytes. Although these osmolytes or osmoprotectors have quite diverse structures, most of them can be determined by anion-exchange chromatography combined with integrated pulsed amperometric detection. This technique offers the advantages of very high sensitivity and new opportunities to determine ectoine and 5-hydroxyectoine—two important osmolytes —after hydrolytic cleavage of the pyrimidine ring. It can even be used to screen bacterial colonies on agar for compatible solutes. Furthermore, it allows amino acids and osmolytes of this type to be determined without derivatization. To test the method we applied it to two halotolerant bacterial strains: Stenotrophomonas rhizophila DSM 14405T and Halomonas elongata DSM 2581T. The first strain produced trehalose and glucosylglycerol, and the second ectoine, as the main osmotic counterweight. The relationship between the content of these osmolytes in the bacterial biomass and the external salinity is described.


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