Choline analysis in Infant Formula and Adult NutritionalsThis is very exciting news that I am sharing with our blog readers. Our improved ion chromatography method provides a sensitive, selective, and reproducible alternative to AOAC Method 999.14 for choline determination in food samples has been awarded First Action Official Method Status by the AOAC! You can find the approval listed on the AOAC Standards and Announcements page as First Action Official MethodSM 2012.20, “Choline in Infant Formula and Adult Nutritionals by Ion Chromatography and Suppressed Conductivity.

The reason choline is added to many foods and dietary supplements, including being a required additive in many infant formulas, is because it is a Vitamin B micronutrient vital to early development in cell membrane integrity, support of methyl group metabolism, and nervous system activity. The U. S. FDA regulations require a minimum of 7.0 mg/100 Cal of choline in infant formula. Natural sources of choline include egg yolks, butter, flax seeds, oats, lentils, potatoes among others.

This method, described in Application Update 189, Choline in Infant Formula and Adult Nutritionals by Ion Chromatography and Suppressed Conductivity, (downloadable PDF) was successfully applied to defatted soy flour and whole egg powder samples provided by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) as part of a multi-laboratory study in the Dietary Supplement Quality Assurance Program (DSQAP) exercise.

The method uses our reagent-free ion chromatography system (Thermo Scientific Dionex ICS-5000 system), suppressed conductivity detection (Thermo Scientific Dionex SRS 300 Cation Self-Regenerating Suppressor), and our high-capacity, cation-exchange, 2 mm ion chromatography column (Thermo Scientific Dionex IonPac CS19 column). The method shows a good separation (with excellent peaks) of lithium, sodium, ammonium, potassium, choline, magnesium, and calcium within 20 min.

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Note that this method can be performed on any of our IC systems capable of eluent generation or any of our IC systems with manually prepared eluent.

The improvements in this method include:

  • Using 2 mm cation-exchange IC columns for higher peak efficiency and shorter analysis times
  • Using electrolytically generated eluent to enhance automation and improve reproducibility
  • Using a modified sample preparation procedure which increases sample throughput
  • Simultaneous determination of multiple cations including sodium, ammonium, and potassium

Don’t forget to check other food safety analytical application on this blog and also do enter your questions in the Comments box below; our experts look forward to hearing from you.