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Chromatographic method for diaminopimelic acid detection in calcareous rocks. Presence of a bacterial biomarker in stromatolites
J Chromatogr A
Journal Article --- Old month value: Jul 13
The presence in the environment of diaminopimelic acid (DAP), a specific eubacterial marker, can be attributed to that of bacteria. We report a reliable and highly sensitive method for the quantification of DAP in calcareous rocks. It consists of acid hydrolysis of rock powder, purification of DAP by chromatography on Dowex 50W and Spherogel AA-NA+ columns, and quantitative analysis by high-performance liquid chromatography. Addition of tritiated DAP, the internal standard, allows one to follow the relevant fractions throughout the purification procedure and to determine their yield. The analytical step consists in pre-column derivatization with ortho-phthaldialdehyde of purified samples, and separation through a reversed-phase C18 column. Chemical controls, i.e., oxidation of samples to rule out the presence of co-eluting lanthionine and cystathionine, as well as mass spectrometry, confirm the presence of DAP in analyzed samples. Our method allows the separation of meso- from L- and/or D-stereoisomers of DAP, and reveals their presence in the examined rocks, two stromatolites of different age and geographic origin.
*Biological Markers Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid/*methods Diaminopimelic Acid/*analysis Escherichia coli/chemistry *Geology Mass Spectrometry
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