Methylglyoxal and glyoxal are endogenous α-oxoaldehyde metabolites and substrates of the glyoxalase system. These and related α-oxoaldehydes are often determined in cell, tissue and body fluid samples by derivatization with 1,2-diaminobenzene and similar compounds. Peroxidase activity in physiological tissues is a potential interference in estimation of methylglyoxal and glyoxal as it catalyses the conversion of 1,2-diaminobenzene into trace amounts of these dicarbonyl metabolites. Residual peroxidase activity in deproteinized extracts is found to cause significant interference in methylglyoxal and glyoxal estimations. This interference is blocked by the addition of sodium azide in the derivatizing buffer. Estimates of methylglyoxal concentration thereby obtained are in keeping with those predicted by systems modelling of methylglyoxal glycation kinetics in situ. Blocking sample peroxidase activity is important to avoid overestimation in the measurement of glyoxal and methylglyoxal. A dicarbonyl assay protocol resistant to interferences is described in the present article.

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