A validated quantitative liquid chromatography-tandem quadrupole mass spectrometry method for monitoring isotopologues to evaluate global modified cytosine ratios in genomic DNA

Makoto Tsuji, Hironori Matsunaga, Daisuke Jinno, Hiroki Tsukamoto, Naoto Suzuki, Yoshihisa Tomioka

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

5-Hydroxymethylcytosine (5hmC) and 5-methylcytosine (5mC) represent important epigenetic modifications to DNA, and a sensitive analytical method is required to determine the levels of 5hmC in the genomic DNA of tumor cells or cultured cell lines because 5hmC is present at particular low levels in these cells. We have developed a sensitive liquid chromatography-tandem quadrupole mass spectrometric method for quantifying 5-hydroxymethyldeoxycytidine (5hmdC), 5-methyldeoxycytidine (5mdC), and deoxyguanosine (dG) levels using stable isotope labeled internal standards, and used this method to estimate the global level of 2 modified cytosines in genomic DNA prepared from small number of cells. The quantification limits for 5hmdC, 5mdC and dG were 20. pM, 2. nM and 10. nM, respectively. MRM transitions for isotopologue (isotopologue-MRM) were used to quantify the 5mdC and dG levels because of the abundance of these nucleosides relative to 5hmdC. The use of isotopologue-MRM for the abundant nucleosides could also avoid the saturation of the detector, and allow for all three nucleosides to be analyzed simultaneously without the need for the dilution and re-injection of samples into the instrument. The global ratios of modified cytosine nucleosides to dG were estimated following the quantification of each nucleoside in the hydrolysate of genomic DNA. The limit of estimation for the global 5hmC level was less than 0.001% using 200. ng of DNA.Using this method, we found that MLL-TET1, which a fusion protein in acute myelogenous leukemia, did not produce 5hmC, but interfered with TET1 activity to produce 5hmC in cells. Our analytical method is therefore a valuable tool for further studies aiming at a deeper understanding of the role of modified cytosine in the epigenetic regulation of cells.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)38-47
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Chromatography B: Analytical Technologies in the Biomedical and Life Sciences
Volume953-954
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014 Mar 15

Keywords

  • 5-Hydroxymethylcytosine
  • 5-Methylcytosine
  • Isotopologue-MRM
  • LC-MS/MS
  • Mixed lineage leukemia
  • Ten-eleven translocation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Biochemistry
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Cell Biology

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