AUTOMATED WORKFLOW FOR THE DETERMINATION OF FATTY ACID METHYL ESTERS (FAME)
Poster May 19, 2014
Beat Schilling1, Reto Bolliger2, Guenter Boehm2
The analysis of oils, fat and fat containing food via fatty acid methyl esters (FAME) is a common task in governmental, quality control (QC) or contract research laboratories (CRO). In most cases the samples are processed manually, which is labor intensive and exposes the lab personnel to potentially hazardous chemicals [1,2].
This poster presents a fully automated workflow using a Workstation with robotic tool change (RTC, Fig. 1) based on a method using sodium methoxide in methanol as reactant . The workflow improves process safety, optimizes throughput and minimizes handling errors. The PALworkstation was equipped with a Dilutor to dispense the liquids for the reactions, the extraction and the cleaning steps, a Vortex module to provide fast mixing and extraction and a tool for a 10 μl syringe to inject the sample into the GC. The software of the workstation allows overlapped sample processing, which increases sample throughput.
The method allows the determination of the total fat content, quantitative analysis of saturated and unsaturated cis- and trans-fatty acids. Three internal standards are used to control extraction, transesterification and undesired saponification. The method was applied to a number of different vegetable oils and water containing animal fats such as butter, cheese and salami.