Mycolic Acid Analysis Service

    Mycolic acids (MAs) are distinctive markers of the cell envelope in Mycobacterium tuberculosis and related species. Their unique and complex structures can be extracted using specific organic solvents, such as esters of trehalose or glycerol, or by esterifying the terminal pentaarabinofuranosyl units of arabinogalactan (AG), form an insoluble polysaccharide-peptidoglycan matrix of the cell wall. Both forms are crucial for the atypical structure and impermeability of the cell envelope, contributing to the two layers of the mycobacterial outer membrane, also known as the mycomembrane, which can be observed via electron microscopy. This characteristic is also observed in Corynebacterium glutamicum, a species displaying many features of the mycobacterial cell envelope, prominently including an outer membrane with MAs.


    Rod-shaped bacterial strains can survive without MAs; however, in Corynebacterium glutamicum mutant strains lacking MAs, their outer membrane is absent. The inhibition of MA synthesis is one of the key mechanisms of action of isoniazid (INH), a potent anti-tuberculosis drug. This has led to extensive research into the chemistry and biosynthesis of MAs. The emergence of extremely drug-resistant (XDR), multidrug-resistant (MDR), and totally drug-resistant (TDR) tuberculosis (TB) underscores the importance of MA metabolic pathways as potential targets for new anti-mycobacterial drugs. Additionally, MA-containing compounds are linked to various physiological and biological properties of mycobacteria, including the anti-tumor capabilities of purified natural cell wall fractions.


    Significant advancements have been made in understanding the biochemical properties, structure, genetics, and regulation of MAs. New roles of MAs have been identified, such as their involvement in the formation of foamy macrophages and biofilm in TB granulomas.


    MtoZ Biolabs offers reliable, rapid, and cost-effective mycolic acid analysis services and utilizes advanced LC-MS/MS systems for high stability, reproducibility, and sensitivity in its separation, characterization, identification, and quantification.
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