Three water-soluble aliphatic arsenicals, dimethylarsinoyl acetate (DMAA), dimethylarsinoyl ethanol (DMAE), and dimethylarsinoyl propionate (DMAP), were identified in marine biological samples. Sample extracts in methanol/water (1 + 1) were analysed by cation-exchange high-performance liquid chromatography/inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (HPLC/ICPMS). Eluate fractions from the HPLC/ICPMS analyses containing the compounds in question were collected and subjected to analysis by electrospray ionisation tandem mass spectrometry (ESI-MS/MS), which provided supportive evidence for the structures of the three compounds. The concentrations of the three arsenicals were determined in 37 marine organisms comprising algae, crustaceans, bivalves, fish and mammals by HPLC/ICPMS. The three arsenicals DMAA, DMAE and DMAP, which occurred at mug kg(-1) concentrations, were detected in 25, 23 and 17 of the 37 samples analysed, respectively. The limits of detection were 2-3 mug kg(-1) dry mass. The data illustrate that the three compounds are common minor constituents in marine samples. This is the first report on DMAE and DMAP as naturally occurring species in marine samples. The presence of DMAA and DMAE supports a proposed biosynthesis of arsenobetaine (AB) from dimethylarsinoylribosides. Alternative proposals, which explain the presence of the compounds in marine samples, are addressed briefly in the paper.
|Journal||Rapid Communications in Mass Spectrometry|
|Publication status||Published - 2005|