The LipidWeb blank

Mass Spectrometry of 3-Pyridylcarbinol Esters

Dicarboxylic Fatty Acids

Dicarboxylic fatty acids are not often present as such in nature, although they are occasionally found in plants and especially in the suberin in plant cuticles. For example, they are major components of cork, i.e. a product of the outer layer of the bark of the cork oak (Quercus suber). Short-chain dicarboxylic acids may be encountered in the oxidative degradation of lipids, but those utilized for the mass spectra of 3-pyridylcarbinol esters discussed here are of commercial standards. Spectra for methyl esters and DMOX derivatives with pyrrolidides for a much wider range of such fatty acids are described in separate documents.

3-Pyridylcarbinol ('picolinyl') esters are probably not the best for mass spectrometry of these fatty acids, as the additional molecular weight and polarity increases the difficulties for gas chromatography in that relatively high column temperatures are required. Harvey (1984) has discussed the mass spectrum of di‑(3‑pyridylcarbinyl)-1,12-dodecanedioate, but this appears to be the only one to have been published elsewhere.

In contrast to methyl esters, the mass spectra of 3-pyridylcarbinol esters of saturated dicarboxylic acids have good molecular ions, although the rest of the spectra are relatively uninteresting, since they are dominated by ions related to the pyridine ring. The mass spectrum of di-(3-pyridylcarbinyl) 1,9-nonanedioate (azeleate) is -

Mass spectrum of di-(3-pyridylcarbinyl) 1,9-nonanedioate

Because of having two nitrogen atoms, the molecular ion is now even numbered (as are those from all the widely used nitrogen-containing derivatives). In the low molecular mass range, the main ions are at m/z = 92, 108, 151 and 164 (see the web page on 3-pyridylcarbinol esters of saturated fatty acids for interpretation). At higher masses, the related ions representing [M‑108]+, [M‑150/1]+, and [M‑164]+, i.e. in this instance at m/z = 262, 220 and 206, respectively, are most abundant.

The mass spectra of 3-pyridylcarbinol esters of two more dicarboxylic acids are available in the Archive section of these web page but without interpretation.


Credits/disclaimer Updated: July 16th, 2017 Author: William W. Christie LipidWeb icon