A Caltech Library Service

Fractionation of hydrogen isotopes in lipid biosynthesis

Sessions, Alex L. and Burgoyne, Thomas W. and Schimmelmann, Arndt and Hayes, John M. (1999) Fractionation of hydrogen isotopes in lipid biosynthesis. Organic Geochemistry, 30 (9). pp. 1193-1200. ISSN 0146-6380. doi:10.1016/S0146-6380(99)00094-7.

Full text is not posted in this repository. Consult Related URLs below.

Use this Persistent URL to link to this item:


Isotopic compositions of carbon-bound hydrogen in individual compounds from eight different organisms were measured using isotope-ratio-monitoring gas chromatography–mass spectrometry. This technique is capable of measuring D/H ratios at natural abundance in individual lipids yielding as little as 20 nmol of H_2, and is applicable to a wide range of compounds including hydrocarbons, sterols, and fatty acids. The hydrogen isotopic compositions of lipids are controlled by three factors: isotopic compositions of biosynthetic precursors, fractionation and exchange accompanying biosynthesis, and hydrogenation during biosynthesis. δD values of lipids from the eight organisms examined here suggest that all three processes are important for controlling natural variations in isotopic abundance. n-Alkyl lipids are depleted in D relative to growth water by 113–262‰, while polyisoprenoid lipids are depleted in D relative to growth water by 142–376‰. Isotopic variations within compound classes (e.g., n-alkanes) are usually less than ∼50‰, but variations as large as 150‰ are observed among isoprenoid lipids from a single organism. Phytol is consistently depleted in D by up to 50‰ relative to other isoprenoid lipids. Inferred isotopic fractionations between cellular water and lipids are greater than those indicated by previous studies.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
Sessions, Alex L.0000-0001-6120-2763
Schimmelmann, Arndt0000-0003-4648-5253
Additional Information:© 1999 Elsevier Science Ltd. Received 17 April 1999; accepted 16 June 1999. (Returned to author for revision 12 May 1999). The authors wish to thank Peter Sauer for assistance collecting samples and preparing cholestanol derivatives, Sean Sylva for preparing and analyzing GCMS samples, and Chris Reddy and Kai-Uwe Hinrichs for helpful discussions. We also thank Scott Gallager, David Kulis, Don Anderson, and Linda Jahnke for supplying culture samples. Marilyn Fogel and one anonymous reviewer provided constructive comments. This project was supported by National Science Foundation grant OCE-9711284 to JMH, and a National Science Foundation postdoctoral fellowship to TWB.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
NSF Postdoctoral FellowshipUNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:Hydrogen isotopes; irmGCMS; Isotope fractionation; Lipids; Acetogenic; Isoprenoid; Biosynthesis
Issue or Number:9
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20130604-081443883
Persistent URL:
Official Citation:Alex L. Sessions, Thomas W. Burgoyne, Arndt Schimmelmann, John M. Hayes, Fractionation of hydrogen isotopes in lipid biosynthesis, Organic Geochemistry, Volume 30, Issue 9, September 1999, Pages 1193-1200, ISSN 0146-6380, 10.1016/S0146-6380(99)00094-7.
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:38771
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:04 Jun 2013 23:52
Last Modified:09 Nov 2021 23:39

Repository Staff Only: item control page