Zero- to Ultralow-Field NMR Spectroscopy of Small Biomolecules


Nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy is a well-established analytical technique used to study chemicals and their transformations. However, high-field NMR spectroscopy necessitates advanced infrastructure, and even cryogen-free benchtop NMR spectrometers cannot be readily assembled from commercially available components. We demonstrate construction of a portable zero-field NMR spectrometer employing a commercially available magnetometer and investigate its applications in analytical chemistry. In particular, J-spectra of small representative biomolecules [13C]-formic acid, [1-13C]-glycine, [2,3-13C]-fumarate, and [1-13C]-d-glucose were acquired, and an approach relying on the presence of a transverse magnetic field during the detection was investigated for relaxometry purposes. We found that the water relaxation time strongly depends on the concentration of dissolved d-glucose in the range of 1–10 mM suggesting opportunities for indirect assessment of glucose concentration in aqueous solutions. Extending analytical capabilities of zero-field NMR to aqueous solutions of simple biomolecules (amino acids, sugars, and metabolites) and relaxation studies of aqueous solutions of glucose highlights the analytical potential of noninvasive and portable ZULF NMR sensors for applications outside of research laboratories.

Autorzy / Authors: 
Piotr Put, Szymon Pustelny, Dmitry Budker, Emanuel Druga, Tobias F. Sjolander, Alexander Pines, and Danila A. Barskiy
Anal. Chem. 93, 6, 3226–3232
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