Improved chemical analysis of cellulose ethers using dialkylamine derivatization and mass spectrometry

Dane Momcilovic, Herje Schagerlöf, B Wittgren, Karl-Gustav Wahlund, G Brinkmalm

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8 Citations (SciVal)


Oligosaccharides of hydroxypropylmethyl cellulose, hydroxypropyl cellulose, and methyl cellulose were investigated by matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization mass spectrometry (MALDI-MS). The cellulose ether oligosaccharides were produced either by enzymatic depolymerization utilizing the purified family 5 endoglucanase from Bacillus agaradhaerens or by partial acidic depolymerization. To lower the limit of detection in MALDI-MS three dilakylamines, dimethyl-, diethyl-, and dipropylamine were studied as reagents for reductive amination of the oligosaccharides. All three amines contributed to a significant increase in sensitivity in MALDI-MS, especially for oligosaccharides with a degree of polymerization (DP) < 3. These reagents were also attractive due to their high volatility, which facilitated the purification of the reaction mixtures. It was established that low-mass discrimination in MALDI-MS in the DP range 1-7 was substantially reduced with dialkylamine derivatization. Hence, dialkylamine derivatization of cellulose ether oligosaccharides obtained by endoglucanase depolymerization increased the number of detected analyte components. Dimethylamine was concluded to be the preferred reagent of those evaluated.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2793-2799
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2005

Bibliographical note

The information about affiliations in this record was updated in December 2015.
The record was previously connected to the following departments: Analytical Chemistry (S/LTH) (011001004), Biochemistry and Structural Biology (S) (000006142)

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Biological Sciences
  • Analytical Chemistry


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