LC-MS metabolomics of polar compounds

David RojoFrancisco J Rupérez


The metabolome is the complete set of small molecules coming from protein activity (anabolism and catabolism) in living systems. They have a broad range of chemical structures and physicochemical properties and therefore different analytical methodologies are necessary. Highly polar metabolites, such as sugars and most amino acids are not retained by conventional reversed-phase LC columns. Without sufficient retention, coelution may result in identification problems while the detection of compounds by MS at low concentrations may also be problematic due to ion suppression. In order to retain compounds based on their hydrophilicity, polar stationary phases and hydrophilic-interaction LC provide a complementary tool to reversed-phase LC for untargeted comprehensive metabolite fingerprinting. However, robustness of the methods is still limiting their applications. This review focuses on sample pretreatment, stationary phases, analytical methods and applications for polar compound analysis in biological matrices.


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