Fatty acid methyl ester

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A fatty acid methyl ester (FAME) can be created by an alkali catalyzed reaction between fats or fatty acids and methanol. The molecules in biodiesel are primarily FAMEs, usually obtained from vegetable oils by transesterification.

Since every microorganism has its specific FAME profile (microbial fingerprinting), it can be used as a tool for microbial source tracking (MST).