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Optimized Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometric Method to Profile Esterified Fatty Acids in Fish Roe and Fish Oil

Author(s): Alaa Khedr* and A. M. Alahdal1
Department of Pharmaceutical Chemistry, 1Department of Clinical Pharmacy, Faculty of Pharmacy, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah 21589, P.O. Box 80260, Saudi Arabia

Correspondence Address:
Department of Pharmaceutical Chemistry, Faculty of Pharmacy, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah 21589, P.O. Box 80260, Saudi Arabia, E-mail:

A gas chromatography-mass spectrometric method was optimized and applied to profile the major esterified fatty acids in eight lyophilized fish roe species and three marketed fish oil capsules. The method was able to separate efficiently 36 standard fatty acids as methyl esters using Teknokroma fused silica capillary column, 60 m×0.25 mm×0.2 μm. However, only 20 major esterified fatty acids were determined in fish roe and fish oil samples. The total amount of esterified fatty acids in salmon wild oil, salmon cold water oil and cod liver oil capsules were 235.5, 145.8, and 195.5 mg/g, respectively. However, the total amount of esterified fatty acids in fish roe species ranged from 40 to 61 mg/g. The quantitation data were treated with statistical principal component analysis, and showed a characteristic score value for each type of fish roe. Each type of fish roe showed a characteristic content profile of 20 major esterified fatty acids. The highest concentration of esterified omega-3, was found in salmon fish roe (15.34 mg/g) and Mosa fish roe (13.15 mg/g). The maximum amount of esterified α-linolenic acid, eicosapentaenoic acid and docosahexaenoic acid were found in salmon wild oil (7.73 mg/g), salmon fish roe (6.09 mg/g), and Mosa fish roe (11.00 mg/g), respectively. The developed method was found to be applicable for qualification and characterization of fish roe and fish oil.

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