Chemistry Matters' Blog

news and blog entries from the Chemistry Matters team

  • Blog
  • Blog
  • Enantioselective Gas Chromatography/Mass Spectrometry of Methylsulfonyl PCBs with Application to Arctic Marine Mammals

Enantioselective Gas Chromatography/Mass Spectrometry of Methylsulfonyl PCBs with Application to Arctic Marine Mammals

Share this

Four different commercially available cyclodextrin (CD) capillary gas chromatography (GC) columns were tested for the enantioselective separation of nine environmentally persistent atropisomeric 3- and 4-methylsulfonyl PCBs (MeSO2-CBs). The selected columns contained cyclodextrins with various cavity diameters (β- or γ-CD), which were methylated and/or tert-butyldimethylsilylated (TBDMS) in the 2,3,6-O-positions. The β-CD column with TBDMS substituents in all of the 2,3,6-O-positions was by far the most selective column for the MeSO2-CBs tested. Enantiomers of congeners with 3-MeSO2 substitution were more easily separated than those with 4-MeSO2 substitution. The separation also seemed to be enhanced for congeners with the chlorine atoms on the non-MeSO2-containing ring and clustered on one side of the same ring. The 2,3-di-O-methyl-6-O-TBDMS-β-CD was found to give somewhat better selectivity than the corresponding γ-CD, in comparison between the two columns, which were identical in all other respects. Enantioselective analysis of arctic ringed seal (Phoca hispida) and polar bear (Ursus maritimus) adipose tissue revealed a strong dominance of certain enantiomers. For example, the enantiomer ratio (ER) of 3-MeSO2-CB149 was 0.32 and <0.1 in ringed seal blubber and polar bear fat, respectively. These low ER values are indicative of highly enantioselective formation, enantioselective metabolism, enantioselective transport across cell membranes, or a combination of the three in both species. Comparable results for the enantiomeric analysis of MeSO2-CBs in biotic tissue extracts were obtained using two highly selective mass spectrometric techniques, ion trap mass spectrometry/mass spectrometry and electron capture negative ion low-resolution mass spectrometry.

Wiberg, R.J. Letcher, C.D. Sandau, J. Duffe, R.J. Norstrom, P. Haglund, T. Bidleman. 1998. Enantioselective gas chromatography/mass spectrometry of methylsulfonyl PCBs with application to arctic marine mammals. Analytical Chemistry Vol. 70, No. 18, p. 3845‑3852.

To view the full article, please click here:

BY Court Sandau Services

About the Author

Court Sandau

Court is the President and owner of Chemistry Matters – a niche environmental consulting firm which specializes in geoforensics, environmental forensics, biomonitoring, and arson investigations. As an international speaker and expert chemist, Court is often called upon to provide his expert services in oil & gas investigations and litigious chemistry issues.

Read Full Bio

Join the Chemistry Matters Newsletter