Measurement of lipid peroxidation

Free Radic Res. 1998 Jun;28(6):659-71. doi: 10.3109/10715769809065821.


Lipid peroxidation results in the formation of conjugated dienes, lipid hydroperoxides and degradation products such as alkanes, aldehydes and isoprostanes. The approach to the quantitative assessment of lipid peroxidation depends on whether the samples involve complex biological material obtained in vivo, or whether the samples involve relatively simple mixtures obtained in vitro. Samples obtained in vivo contain a large number of products which themselves may undergo metabolism. The measurement of conjugated diene formation is generally applied as a dynamic quantitation e.g. during the oxidation of LDL, and is not generally applied to samples obtained in vivo. Lipid hydroperoxides readily decompose, but can be measured directly and indirectly by a variety of techniques. The measurement of MDA by the TBAR assay is non-specific, and is generally poor when applied to biological samples. More recent assays based on the measurement of MDA or HNE-lysine adducts are likely to be more applicable to biological samples, since adducts of these reactive aldehydes are relatively stable. The discovery of the isoprostanes as lipid peroxidation products which can be measured by gas chromatography mass spectrometry or immunoassay has opened a new avenue by which to quantify lipid peroxidation in vivo, and will be discussed in detail.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Aldehydes / analysis*
  • Animals
  • Biochemistry / methods*
  • Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid
  • Fluorescence
  • Humans
  • Lipid Peroxidation*
  • Malondialdehyde / analysis
  • Malondialdehyde / metabolism
  • Mass Spectrometry
  • Oxidative Stress
  • Prostaglandins / analysis*
  • Prostaglandins / chemistry*
  • Thiobarbituric Acid Reactive Substances / analysis
  • Thiobarbituric Acid Reactive Substances / chemistry
  • Thiobarbituric Acid Reactive Substances / metabolism


  • Aldehydes
  • Prostaglandins
  • Thiobarbituric Acid Reactive Substances
  • Malondialdehyde
  • 4-hydroxy-2-nonenal