Use of Automated Solid Phase Dynamic Extraction (SPDE)/GC-MS and Novel Macros in the Search for African Elephant Pheromones
A relatively small number of mammalian pheromones has been identified, in contrast to a plethora of known insect pheromones, but two remarkable Asian elephant/insect pheromonal linkages have been elucidated, namely, (Z)-7-dodecen-1-yl acetate and frontalin. In addition, behavioral bioassays have demonstrated the presence of a chemical signal in the urine of female African elephants around the time of ovulation. Our search for possible ovulatory pheromones in the headspace over female African elephant urine has revealed for the first time the presence of a number of known insect pheromones. This search has been facilitated by the use of a powerful new analytical technique, automated solid phase dynamic extraction (SPDE)/GC-MS, as well as by novel macros for enhanced and rapid comparison of multiple mass spectral data files from Agilent ChemStation^ˆ. This chapter will focus on our methodologies and results, as well as on a comparison of SPDE and the more established techniques of solid phase microextraction (SPME) and stir bar sorptive extraction (SBSE).
KeywordsEstrous Cycle Mass Spectral Data Asian Elephant African Elephant Insect Pheromone
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