Analytical Approaches to Determination of Total Choline in Foods and Dietary Supplements
Melissa M. Phillips
Choline is a quaternary amine that is synthesized in the body or consumed through the diet. Choline is critical for cell membrane structure and function and in synthesis of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine. While the human body produces this micronutrient, dietary supplementation of choline is necessary for good health. The major challenge in the analysis of choline in foods and dietary supplements is in the extraction and/or hydrolysis approach. In many products, choline is present as choline esters, which can be quantitated individually or treated with acid, base, or enzymes in order to release choline ions for analysis. A critical review of approaches based on extraction and quantitation of each choline ester are presented as well as hydrolysis-based methods for determination of total choline in foods and dietary supplements.