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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Polymeric Sulfated Amino Acid Surfactants: A Class of Versatile Chiral Selectors for Micellar Electrokinetic Chromatography (MEKC) and MEKC-MS.

In this work, three amino acid-derived (l-leucinol, l-isoleucinol, l-valinol) sulfated chiral surfactants are synthesized and polymerized. These chiral sulfated surfactants are thoroughly characterized to determine critical micelle concentration, aggregation number, polarity, optical rotation, and partial specific volume. For the first time the morphological behavior of polymeric sulfated surfactants is revealed using cryogenic high-resolution electron microscopy. The polysodium N-undecenoyl-l-leucine sulfate shows distinct tubular structure, while polysodium N-undecenoyl-l-valine sulfate also shows tubular morphology but without any distinct order of the tubes. On the other hand, polysodium N-undecenoyl-l-isoleucine sulfate (poly-l-SUCILS) displays random distribution of coiled/curved filaments with heavy association of tightly and loosely bound water. All three polymeric sulfated surfactants are compared for enantioseparation of a broad range of structurally diverse racemic compounds at very acidic, neutral, and basic pH conditions in micellar electrokinetic chromatography (MEKC). A small combinatorial library of 10 structurally related phenylethylamines (PEAs) is investigated for chiral separation under acidic and moderately acidic to neutral pH conditions using an experimental design. In contrast to neutral pH conditions, at acidic pH, significantly enhanced chiral resolution is obtained for class I and class II PEAs due to the compact structure of polymeric sulfated surfactants. It is observed that the presence of a hydroxy group on the benzene ring of PEAs resulted in deterioration of enantioseparation. A sensitive MEKC-mass spectrometry (MS) method is developed for one of the PEAs (e.g., (+/-)-pseudoephedrine) in human urine. Very low limit of detection (LOD) is obtained at pH 2.0 (LOD 325 ng/mL), which is approximately 16 times better compared to pH 8.0 (LOD 5.2 mug/mL). Another broad range of chiral analytes (beta-blockers, phenoxypropionic acid, benzoin derivatives, PTH-amino acids, benzodiazepinones) studied also provided improved chiral separation at low pH compared to high-pH conditions. Among the three polymeric sulfated surfactants, poly-l-SUCILS with two chiral centers on the polymer head group provided overall higher enantioresolution for the investigated acidic, basic, and neutral compounds. This work clearly demonstrates for the first time the superiority of chiral separation and sensitive MS detection at low pH over conventional high-pH chiral separation and detection employing anionic chiral polymeric surfactants in MEKC and MEKC-MS.[1]


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