Sterol Analysis

Phytosterols are getting more and more attention in the fields of medicine, food, and life sciences. CD BioGlyco provides sterols quantitative analysis services in different samples by gas chromatography (GC), liquid chromatography (LC), and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS).

Classification and Function of Sterols

Sterol is an alcohol compound with cyclopentane perhydrophenanthrene (steroid nucleus) as the skeleton. It mainly exists in animals and plants in the form of free sterols, sterol glycosides, sterol fatty acids, fatty acyl sterol glycosides, and sterol hydroxyaromatic acid esters. The C-5 position of most sterols is a double bond. The C-3 hydroxyl is one of the important active groups, through which sterols form various derivatives. There are many types of sterols. According to different sources, they are divided into three categories: animal sterols, fungal sterols, and plant sterols. Animal sterols are mainly cholesterol, which is mainly found in the blood, fat, brain, and nerve tissues of humans and animals; Fungal sterols mainly include ergosterol and fucosterol, which are mainly found in molds and mushrooms; Phytosterols mainly include β-sitosterol, stigmasterol, campesterol, and rapeseed sterol. The structure of plant sterols is similar to that of animal sterols. The only difference is the difference in the number of methyl groups attached to position C-4 and the difference in the side chain at position C-11. It is the slight differences in these side chains that make their different physiological functions.

Phytosterols and their derivatives have important physiological functions, such as reducing blood cholesterol concentration, preventing and curing prostate diseases, as anti-cancer substances, hormone-like functions, and anti-inflammatory effects, and are widely used in food, feed, cosmetics, textiles, and other fields. As a component of the cell membrane, cholesterol plays an important role in regulating cell membrane fluidity, phase change and permeability, forming lipid rafts and micro-domains on the membrane.

The main pathways of plant sterols in the human body.Fig.1 The main pathways of plant sterols in the human body. (Kopylov, 2021)

Services

Phytosterols have the effects of lowering blood cholesterol concentration, anti-cancer, anti-oxidation, anti-inflammatory, and antipyretic effects, etc., and are receiving more and more attention in the fields of medicine and life sciences, especially in the food industry. Therefore, it is necessary to conduct qualitative and quantitative analyses of sterols. At CD BioGlyco, the sterol analysis services we provide include but are not limited to:

  • Sample preparation for chromatographic analysis

    Commonly used sterol extraction methods include liquid-liquid extraction, reflux extraction, and pressure extraction. After saponification of sterols, total free sterols are obtained. The direct saponification method obtains most of the free sterols, but this method cannot hydrolyze sterol glycosides. Acidic hydrolysis hydrolyzes sterol glycosides to obtain free sterols. In GC, for higher resolution and detection sensitivity, sterol samples need to be silanized or acetylated, and the moisture content in the system determines the derivatization yield.

  • Commonly used chromatographic detection methods

    The structure of phytosterols is extremely similar, and it is difficult to accurately determine the content of different sterols in samples using general chemical methods. Therefore, GC and LC have been widely used in sterol analysis and determination. GC is an effective analytical method to separate sterols, but there are certain difficulties in qualitative analysis of unknown components. GC-MS retains the high-efficiency separation characteristics of GC, combined with the qualitative analysis of MS detectors, providing an efficient qualitative and quantitative analysis method for complex sterols. LC is suitable for the analysis of thermally unstable sterols and bound sterols (sterol glycosides and fatty acyl sterol glycosides).

Applications

  • Analyze the content of sterols in plants
  • Determination of the composition of phytosterols in royal jelly
  • Determination of the composition and content of plant sterols in vegetable oil
  • Study on the mechanism of sterols

Advantages of Us

  • Multiple pretreatment methods
  • Choose different analysis methods according to the characteristics of the sample
  • Rigorous process and detailed reports
  • 24 hours after-sales service

CD BioGlyco provides high-quality sterol analysis services for our clients worldwide. If you are interested in our services, please feel free to contact us.

Reference:

  1. Kopylov, A.T.; et al. Diversity of plant sterols metabolism: the impact on human health, sport, and accumulation of contaminating sterols. Nutrients. 2021, 13(5): 1623.
This service is for Research Use Only, not intended for any clinical use.

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