Toxicity from acute exposure to nerve agents and organophosphorus toxicants is due to irreversible inhibition of acetylcholinesterase (AChE) in the nervous system. AChE in red blood cells is a surrogate for AChE in the nervous system. Previously we developed an immunopurification method to enrich red blood cell AChE (RBC AChE) as a biomarker of exposure. The goal of the present work was to provide an alternative RBC AChE enrichment strategy, by binding RBC AChE to Hupresin affinity gel. AChE was solubilized from frozen RBC by addition of 1% Triton X-100. Insoluble debris was removed by centrifugation. The red, but not viscous, RBC AChE solution was loaded on a Hupresin affinity column. Hemoglobin and other proteins were washed off with 3 M NaCl, while retaining AChE bound to Hupresin. Denatured AChE was eluted with 1% trifluoroacetic acid. The same protocol was used for 20 mL of RBC AChE inhibited with a soman model compound. The acid denatured protein was digested with pepsin and analyzed by liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry on a 6600 Triple-TOF mass spectrometer. A targeted method identified the aged soman adduct on serine 203 in peptide FGESAGAAS. It was concluded that Hupresin can be used to enrich soman-inhibited AChE solubilized from 8 mL of frozen human erythrocytes, yielding a quantity sufficient for detecting soman exposure.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Analytical Chemistry