A sensitive liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry method for simultaneous determination of two active chromones from Saposhnikovia root in rat plasma and urine.
ABSTRACT A sensitive and efficient liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry method was developed and validated for the simultaneous determination of two active chromones (prim-O-glucosylcimifugin and 4'-O-D-glucosyl-5-O-methylvisamminol) from Saposhnikovia root in rat plasma and urine. The plasma or urine samples were prepared by protein precipitation. Chromatographic separation of the two active chromones from matrix interferences was achieved on an Angilent TC-C(18) column with a mobile phase consisted of methanol, water and 0.1% formic acid. Puerarin was added as the internal standard. The method was validated with the concentration range 1.0-100 ng/mL in rat plasma and 10-1000 ng/mL in urine for prim-O-glucosylcimifugin, 1.5-150 ng/mL in plasma and 15-1500 ng/mL in urine for 4'-O-D-glucosyl-5-O-methylvisamminol. The lower limit of quantitation (LLOQ) of prim-O-glucosylcimifugin and 4'-O-D-glucosyl-5-O-methylvisamminol was 1.0 and 1.5 ng/mL in plasma, 10 and 15 ng/mL in urine, respectively. The intra- and inter-day precision across three validation days over the entire concentration range was lower than 9.0% as terms of relative standard deviation (R.S.D.). Accuracy determined at three quality control concentrations (2.0, 25 and 75 ng/mL for prim-O-glucosylcimifugin; 3.0, 37.5 and 112.5 ng/mL for 4'-O-D-glucosyl-5-O-methylvisamminol) ranged from -1.9 to 3.9% as terms of relative error (R.E.). The LC-ESI-MS method was further applied to assess pharmacokinetics and urine excretion of the two chromones after oral administration of Fangfeng extract to rats. Practical utility of this new LC-MS method was confirmed in pilot pharmacokinetic studies in rats following oral administration.