METHODS: The mass spectral characterization of the proposed NMs-GSH conjugates was performed with liquid chromatography high-resolution tandem mass spectrometry (LC-HRMS/MS). The final reaction mixtures were analysed in positive electrospray ionisation (ESI) at different incubation times.
RESULTS: This study identified three types of conjugates in addition to ethanolamines, the hydrolysis products of NMs. Monoglutathionyl, diglutathionyl and phosphorylated conjugates were produced for each of the NMs, bis(2-chloroethyl)ethylamine (HN1), bis(2-chloroethyl)methylamine (HN2) and tris(2-chloroethyl)amine (HN3). The monoglutathionyl conjugates consisted of HN1-GSH, HN2-GSH and HN3-GSH. The spontaneous and primary conjugates of diglutathionyl were HN1-GSH2, HN2-GSH2 and HN3-GSH2. These included phosphorylated conjugates, namely HN1-GSH-PO4 , HN2-GSH-PO4 and HN3-GSH-PO4 , as might have formed due to hydrolysis in phosphate buffer.
CONCLUSIONS: The mass spectral data of all conjugates formed in the presence of all NMs and GSH are reported in this study. These GSH metabolites can be used to confirm NMs toxicity in biological samples such as urine.
METHODS: We examined how isotopic enrichment varied in the diverse genus Nepenthes, among species producing pitchers for invertebrate capture and species exhibiting mutualisms for the collection of mammal excreta. Enrichment factors were calculated from δ15N and δ13C values from eight Nepenthes species and naturally occurring hybrids along with co-occurring reference (non-carnivorous) plants from three mountain massifs in Borneo: Mount Kinabalu, Mount Tambuyukon and Mount Trus Madi.
RESULTS: All Nepenthes examined, except N. edwardsiana, were significantly enriched in 15N compared to co-occurring non-carnivorous plants, and 15N enrichment was more than two-fold higher in species with adaptations for the collection of mammal excreta compared with other Nepenthes.
CONCLUSIONS: The collection of mammal faeces clearly represents a highly effective strategy for heterotrophic nitrogen gain in Nepenthes. Species with adaptations for capturing mammal excreta occur exclusively at high elevation (i.e. are typically summit-occurring) where previous studies suggest invertebrate prey are less abundant and less frequently captured. As such, we propose this strategy may maximize nutritional return by specializing towards ensuring the collection and retention of few but higher-value N sources in environments where invertebrate prey may be scarce.