|Quantitation of Dodecanoic Acid in Coconut Oil
|Advances in Clinical Analysis
|Mr John Moncur
|Dr Joel Gummer
Dr Robert Trengove
Abstract Information :
Natural oils such as coconut oil are used topically to improve skin condition and aid in epithelial healing. It has been observed that coconut oil decreases water loss and infection rates in newborns, without significant adverse effects. These findings suggest that the composition of virgin coconut oil may possess antimicrobial properties. However, the biochemical mechanisms underlying these observations are not well understood and the application of natural oils is not currently standard care in neonatal intensive care units. Coconut oil contains a significant composition of mono- di- and tri-acylglycerols, as well as free fatty acids (FFAs). The triacylglycerol (TAG) component of coconut oil can be reduced metabolically to monoacylglycerol (MAG) and FFAs, of which some have been demonstrated to possess antimicrobial properties. The FFA, dodecanoic acid, is one such FFA in coconut oil, and may explain at least part of the speculated antimicrobial properties. Considering the huge burden of invasive infections and the associated short- and long-term morbidity in preterm infants, prophylactic application of topical coconut oil would be highly feasible, safe and affordable.
Quantitation of dodecanoic acid will provide evidence for the contribution of this FFA to the antimicrobial activity of coconut oil.
Here we present a fast, simple standard addition quantitation of the FFA dodecanoic acid in coconut oil. An authentic dodecanoic acid standard was added to seven dilute samples of coconut oil to give concentrations between 0-100 ng/mL. A Waters Acquity UPLC equipped with a Waters 100 mm HSST3 column coupled to a SCIEX Triple TOF 5600 mass spectrometer was used. SpectralWorks AnalyzerPro® was used to view and process data.
Dodecanoic acid concentration in coconut oil was approximately 0.11% w/w