Analytica Chimica Acta, 650(2), p. 234-240 (2009); doi:10.1016/j.aca.2009.07.052
Metal speciation analysis in MLPs was carried out in two snails, Marisa cornuarietis and Pomacea bridgesi, in order to investigate them as possible sentinel organisms of heavy metal contamination. To carry out this study snails born in a non-contaminated environment were divided into two groups: a control group and a contaminated one with cadmium administered for 40 days. Subsequently, we investigated the speciation of the induced MLPs in exposed animals in relation to controls. In order to obtain the MLP fraction, cytosols from both snail species where subjected to size-exclusion fractionation, monitoring on-line the metal signal (Cd, Cu and Zn) by ICP-MS while protein elution was followed by on-line UV detection. MLP fraction was then separated by anion-exchange (AE)-FPLC using optimal chromatographic conditions for the separation of the different MLP isoforms in both snail species. Specific detection of separated metalloforms was carried out again by the hyphenation of the AE chromatographic system with ICP-MS. The determination of the amount of metal bound to MLPs was carried out by post-column isotope dilution analysis ICP-MS, finding that the snail M. cornuarietis accumulated higher concentrations of cadmium than P. bridgesi. Thus this first snail could therefore be a better candidate sentinel organism of pollution in natural waters. Identification and characterization of the isoforms separated in M. cornuarietis was carried out for the entire or intact isoforms by MALDI-TOF and then conventional triptic digestion was also carried out to identify the nature of the formed peptides. The presence identification of a MLP isoform of relatively low molecular weight in M. cornuarietis is reported.