A Comparative Evaluation of Thiobarbituric Acid Methods for the Determination of Malondialdehyde in Biological Materials

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A comparative evaluation was made of the conventional spectrophotometric procedure and three published high performance liquid chromatographic (HPLC) procedures for the determination of malondialdehyde (MDA) as the thiobarbituric acid (TBA) derivative when applied to liver, fish meal, serum, and urine. Except for urine, spectrophotometric analysis overestimated MDA content. Purification of the TBA-MDA complex obtained from liver and fish meal on reverse phase cartridges was found to entail a loss of complex bound to residual peptides in the trichloracetic acid (TCA) extract. Mincing as opposed to homogenizing liver samples led to a doubling of values for MDA content. Hexanal was a major TBA reactant, in addition to MDA, in all the samples. Acid hydrolysis and heat were necessary for the release of MDA bound to the amino groups of proteins and other amino compounds. Methods for free MDA have limited application to biological materials except short term in vitro preparations such as peroxidizing microsomes, in which free MDA accumulates. On the basis of these and other observations, a modified HPLC procedure for the determination of MDA as the TBA-MDA complex is proposed.


Chemistry and Geology

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Free Radical Biology and Medicine