Metabolic Profiling of Xenopus leavis

Student: Rachel Mann

Faculty Adviser: Dr. George Delahunty and Dr. George Greco


We are interested in creating a full metabolic profile of Xenopus leavis in order to better define the endocrine control of metabolism in ectotherms. Such metabolites include sugars, amino acids, ketones, and free fatty acids. Samples are derivatized by oximation and silylation to increase their volatility for Gas Chromatography Mass Spectrometry analysis. Numerous samples of pure compounds have been derivatized and analyzed to optimize dericatization and instrumentation conditions. Analysis of a Xenopus blood sample has resulted in the identification of over 50 compounds. Specifically, we are most interested in sugary, free fatty acids, and amino acids and their role in ectotherm metabolism. We have also done metabolic comparisons frogs under both fasted and fed conditions, as well as glucose injected frogs. Gaining a better understanding of metabolism in ectotherms can provide some insight about how metabolism has evolved in the transition from ectotherms to endotherms.