Date Approved


Degree Type

Open Access Senior Honors Thesis

Department or School



Instrumentation was developed to monitor the volatile products oflipid peroxidation in near-realtime. This was accomplished using a miniature incubator with a cryofocusing inlet and gas chromatography with a time-of-flight mass spectrometer. The headspace above myoglobininduced lipid peroxidation of arachadonic acid in phosphatidyl choline was sampled in order to quantitate hexanal, a known marker of lipid peroxidation. With an analysis time of less than four minutes, the rapid preconcentration of volatile products allowed for low detection limits in a short length of time. Reactions were sampled repetitively, allowing near-real-time monitoring of the reaction. When phospholipid samples contained no basal levels of hexanal, the production of hexanal was linear for approximately 40 minutes, and reached concentrations of approximately 1.5 ppm. For phospholipids samples which did contain basal levels of hexanal, the production was linear for approximately 25 minutes, and reached concentrations of around 5 ppm. The presence or absence of hexanal in the lipid sample prior to the addition of myoglobin was therefore essential in determining the linearity, initial rate, and extent of hexanal production during the reaction.