Separation of Dietary Omega-3 and Omega-6 Fatty Acids in Food by Capillary Electrophoresis.

Soliman, L.C., Donkor, K.K., Church, J.S., Cinel, B., Prema, D., and Dugan, M.E.R (2013). "Separation of Dietary Omega-3 and Omega-6 Fatty Acids in Food by Capillary Electrophoresis.", Journal of Separation Science, 36(20), pp. 3440-3448. doi : 10.1002/jssc.201300738  Access to full text


A lower dietary omega-6/omega-3 (n-6/n-3) fatty acid ratio (<4) has been shown to be beneficial in preventing a number of chronic illnesses. Interest exists in developing more rapid and sensitive analytical methods for profiling fatty acid levels in foods. An aqueous CE method was developed for the simultaneous determination of 15 n-3 and n-6 relevant fatty acids. The effect of pH and concentration of buffer, type and concentration of organic modifier, and additive on the separation was investigated in order to determine the best conditions for the analysis. Baseline separations of the 15 fatty acids were achieved using 40 mM borate buffer at pH 9.50 containing 50 mM SDS, 10 mM β-cyclodextrin, and 10% acetonitrile. The developed CE method has LODs of <5 mg/L and good linearity (R2 > 0.980) for all fatty acids studied. The proposed method was successfully applied to the determination of n-3 and n-6 fatty acids in flax seed, Udo® oils and a selection of grass-fed and grain-fed beef muscle samples.

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