Mass spectrometry analysis of oxidized phospholipids

Chem Phys Lipids. 2008 Nov;156(1-2):1-12. doi: 10.1016/j.chemphyslip.2008.07.003. Epub 2008 Jul 11.


The evidence that oxidized phospholipids play a role in signaling, apoptotic events and in age-related diseases is responsible for the increasing interest for the study of this subject. Phospholipid changes induced by oxidative reactions yield a huge number of structurally different oxidation products which difficult their isolation and characterization. Mass spectrometry (MS), and tandem mass spectrometry (MS/MS) using the soft ionization methods (electrospray and matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization) is one of the finest approaches for the study of oxidized phospholipids. Product ions in tandem mass spectra of oxidized phospholipids, allow identifying changes in the fatty acyl chain and specific features such as presence of new functional groups in the molecule and their location along the fatty acyl chain. This review describes the work published on the use of mass spectrometry in identifying oxidized phospholipids from the different classes.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cardiolipins / analysis*
  • Cardiolipins / chemistry
  • Fatty Acids / analysis
  • Fatty Acids / chemistry
  • Mass Spectrometry / methods*
  • Oxidation-Reduction
  • Phosphatidylethanolamines / analysis*
  • Phosphatidylethanolamines / chemistry
  • Phospholipids / chemistry*
  • Phosphorylcholine / analysis
  • Phosphorylcholine / chemistry
  • Phosphoserine / analogs & derivatives*
  • Phosphoserine / analysis
  • Phosphoserine / chemistry
  • Spectrometry, Mass, Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption-Ionization
  • Sphingomyelins / chemistry
  • Tandem Mass Spectrometry / methods*


  • Cardiolipins
  • Fatty Acids
  • Phosphatidylethanolamines
  • Phospholipids
  • Sphingomyelins
  • Phosphorylcholine
  • glycerophosphoethanolamine
  • Phosphoserine
  • glycerophosphoserine