Electrospray ionization tandem mass spectrometric analysis of sulfatide. Determination of fragmentation patterns and characterization of molecular species expressed in brain and in pancreatic islets

Fong Fu Hsu, Alan Bohrer, John Turk

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

85 Scopus citations

Abstract

The sphingolipid sulfatide is a component of myelin and some non-neuronal cells. Antibodies to sulfatide occur in some patients with autoimmune neuropathies and in patients with insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (IDDM) caused by immunologic destruction of insulin-secreting pancreatic islet β-cells. Distinct sulfatide molecular species may differ in immunogenicity, and facile means to identify sulfatide species in islets and other tissues obtainable in only small amounts could be useful. Electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (ESI/MS) permits structural determination of small quantities of phospholipids and is applied here to sulfatide analysis. We find that sulfatide standards are readily analyzed by negative ion ESI/MS, and tandem mass spectra of individual species exhibit some ions common to all species and other ions that reflect distinct fatty acid substituents in different sulfatide molecules. A signature ion cluster resulting from cleavage directed by the α-hydroxy group of sulfatide species with a hydroxylated fatty acid substituent identifies such species. Sulfatide profiles in tissue lipid extracts can be obtained by ESI/MS/MS scanning for common sulfatide ions and for ions reflecting fatty acid substituents. Islets are demonstrated to contain sulfatide and to exhibit a profile of species different from that of brain. Copyright (C) 1998 Elsevier Science B.V.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)202-216
Number of pages15
JournalBiochimica et Biophysica Acta - Lipids and Lipid Metabolism
Volume1392
Issue number2-3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 15 1998

Keywords

  • Autoimmunity
  • Diabetes mellitus
  • Sulfogalactosylceramide

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