Mass Spectrometry of Non-protein Amino Acids: BMAA and Neurodegenerative Diseases
2015 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Neurodegenerative diseases have been shown to correlate positively with an ageing population. The most common neurodegenerative diseases are amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s disease. The cause of these diseases is believed to be the interaction between genetic and environmental factors, synergistically acting with ageing. BMAA (β-methylamino-L-alanine) is one kind of toxin present in our environment and might play an important role in the development of those diseases.
BMAA was initially isolated from cycad seeds in Guam, where the incidence of ALS/Parkinsonism-dementia complex among the indigenous people was 50 – 100 times higher than the rest of the world in the 1950’s. BMAA can induce toxic effects on rodents and primates. Furthermore, it can potentiate neuronal injury on cell cultures at concentrations as low as 10 µM. BMAA was reported to be produced by cyanobacteria, and could bio-magnify through the food chain.
In this thesis, work was initially focused on the improvement of an existing analytical method for BMAA identification and quantification using liquid chromatography coupled with tandem mass spectrometry. Subsequently, the refined method was applied to environmental samples for probing alternative BMAA producer(s) in nature and to seafood samples for estimation of human exposure to this toxin.
In Paper I, a systematic screening of the isomers of BMAA in a database was performed and seven potential isomers were suggested. Three of them were detected or suspected in natural samples. In Paper II, a deuterated internal standard was synthesized and used for quantifying BMAA in cyanobacteria. In Paper III, Diatoms were discovered to be a BMAA producer in nature. In Paper IV, ten popular species of seafood sold in Swedish markets were screened for BMAA. Half of them were found to contain BMAA at a level of 0.01 – 0.90 µg/g wet weight. In Future perspectives, the remaining questions important in this field are raised.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Department of Environmental Science and Analytical Chemistry, Stockholm University , 2015. , 43 p.
Neurodegenerative diseases, BMAA, Isomers, LC-MS/MS, Cyanobacteria, Diatoms, Seafood contamination
Research subject Analytical Chemistry
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-114110ISBN: 978-91-7649-028-0OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-114110DiVA: diva2:789762
2015-04-09, Magnélisalen, Kemiska övningslaboratoriet, Svante Arrheniusväg 16 B, Stockholm, 10:00 (English)
Bergquist, Jonas, Professor
Ilag, Leopold, Associate Professor
List of papers