Journal of agricultural and food chemistry

Degradation of malathion and phenthoate by glutathione reductase in wheat germ.

PMID 10888576


Residual malathion in wheat was estimated at a lower value when analysis was performed by extraction with acetone after addition of water to swell the wheat, according to the Japanese Bulletin Method. The supernatant of the wheat homogenate showed degradation not only of malathion but also of phenthoate. Malathion and phenthoate were not degraded by the boiled supernatant of the wheat homogenate. It was presumed for this reason that glutathione reductase (GR; EC 1.6. 4.2) in the wheat degraded malathion. The following results were obtained: (1) GR originating in wheat could degrade malathion and phenthoate. (2) The degradation of malathion by the GR was inhibited by excessive GSSG. (3) There was a high correlation between GR activity and malathion degradation activity of the supernatant of wheat homogenates. It is likely that GR acted on the specific structure of malathion and phenthoate, the S=P-S bond, and the blanch structure bonding with the sulfur atom. Following the above, extraction with acetone after addition of water (the Japanese Bulletin Method) should be replaced by extraction with pure organic solvent and without addition of water for swelling.

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Phenthoate, PESTANAL®, analytical standard