Conditioning of chromatographic systems prior to metabolomic studies : Investigation of the conditioning effect and the possibility to alter it
Sammanfattning: The conditioning effect in metabolomic studies is the phenomenon of initial variation of analytical results in the first 5-10 injections of a biological sample in chromatographic systems. The deviation manifests itself as a drift in retention time, peak area and in multivariate analysis. It is a major quality assurance problem in the metabolomic field and if not accounted for would result in high analytical variance. The aim of this study was to investigate the conditioning effect and to gain further knowledge about it. The study was carried out on UPLC of hydrophilic liquid chromatography (HILIC) type coupled to quadrupole time of flight (QTOF) MS. A systematic study was designed to investigate the effects of the age of the analytical column. An investigation into certain matrix components as a possible cause of the conditioning effect was made. Different sample preparation methods were investigated. One result showed that no conditioning could be seen and the system appeared stable from the first injection. Differences in sample composition between samples with conditioning effect and samples without conditioning effect were investigated. No correlation between conditioning effect and levels of certain matrix compounds could be found. More studies of correlation between sample composition and the amount of conditioning occurring is needed. Some samples appear to have no retention time drift but have a significant drift in peak area and in multivariate analysis. This is an indication that the conditioning effect should be analysed in more ways than one before determining if a system is stable.
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