A comparison of patient matched meibum and tear lipidomes

Brown, Simon H.J., Kunnen, Carolina M.E., Duchoslav, Eva, Dolla, Naveen K., Kelso, Michael J., Papas, Eric B., Lazon de la Jara, Percy, Willcox, Mark D.P., Blanksby, Stephen J., & Mitchell, Todd W. (2013) A comparison of patient matched meibum and tear lipidomes. Investigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science, 54(12), pp. 7417-7423.

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  • To quantify the molecular lipid composition of patient-matched tear and meibum samples and compare tear and meibum lipid molecular profiles.


  • Lipids were extracted from tears and meibum by bi-phasic methods using 10:3 tertbutyl methyl ether:methanol, washed with aqueous ammonium acetate, and analyzed by chipbased nanoelectrospray ionization tandem mass spectrometry. Targeted precursor ion and neutral loss scans identified individual molecular lipids and quantification was obtained by comparison to internal standards in each lipid class.


  • Two hundred and thirty-six lipid species were identified and quantified from nine lipid classes comprised of cholesterol esters, wax esters, (O-acyl)-x-hydroxy fatty acids, triacylglycerols, phosphatidylcholine, lysophosphatidylcholine, phosphatidylethanolamine, sphingomyelin, and phosphatidylserine. With the exception of phospholipids, lipid molecular profiles were strikingly similar between tears and meibum.


  • Comparisons between tears and meibum indicate that meibum is likely to supply the majority of lipids in the tear film lipid layer. However, the observed higher mole ratio of phospholipid in tears shows that analysis of meibum alone does not provide a complete understanding of the tear film lipid composition.

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ID Code: 70213
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: Lipidome, Lipidomics, Lipids, Mass spectrometry, Meibum, OAHFA, Tears
DOI: 10.1167/iovs.13-12916
ISSN: 0146-0404
Divisions: Current > Schools > School of Chemistry, Physics & Mechanical Engineering
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Science & Engineering Faculty
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2013 Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology
Deposited On: 14 Apr 2014 05:15
Last Modified: 16 Dec 2016 03:26

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