Effect of matrix on recovery of biogenic amines in fish

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Biogenic amines, such as putrescine, cadaverine, and histamine, in fish can be indicators of spoilage and/or safety. Methanol extraction used for AOAC Official Methods 996.07 and 977.13 has resulted in low amine recoveries in fish. Extraction methodology was evaluated to improve recovery from fish tissue. Samples were evaluated for recovery of known quantities of biogenic amines added to tissue prior to extraction. Addition of 25% 0.4 N HCI to the 75% methanol-water extraction solvent (according to AOAC Official Methods 996.07 and 977.13) resulted in higher recoveries (P <0.05) of the biogenic amines. Putrescine recovery increased from 44 ± 2 to 100 ± 14% in flounder and scup, and from 53 ± 21 to 119 ± 27% in mackerel and butterfish; cadaverine recovery increased from 47 ± 4 to 106 ± 15% (flounder/scup) and 58 ± 24 to 113 ± 9% (mackerel/butterfish); histamine recovery increased from 54 ± 13 to 89 ± 28% (mackerel). MeOH extraction resulted in comparable recovery from canned tuna, indicating that protein denaturation from processing may eliminate possible matrix interference. Acidification of the solvent resulted in a more complete extraction of the added amines to fresh/frozen fish tissue. This finding could indicate that current extraction procedures may cause biogenic amines to be underestimated.

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Journal of AOAC International