A simple and accurate LC‑MS/MS method for monitoring cyclosporin A that is suitable for high throughput analysis
Affiliations: Department of Laboratory Medicine, The Second Clinical College of Guangzhou University of Chinese Medicine, Guangzhou, Guangdong 510120, P.R. China, Guangzhou KingMed Center for Clinical Laboratory Co., Ltd.; KingMed College of Laboratory Medical of Guangzhou Medical University, Guangzhou, Guangdong 510120, P.R. China
- Published online on: May 23, 2023 https://doi.org/10.3892/etm.2023.12041
- Article Number: 342
Copyright: © Yuan et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of Creative Commons Attribution License.
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With time, the number of samples in clinical laboratories from therapeutic drug monitoring has increased. Existing analytical methods for blood cyclosporin A (CSA) monitoring, such as high‑performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) and immunoassays, have limitations including cross‑reactivity, time consumption, and the complicated procedures involved. Liquid chromatography‑tandem mass spectrometry (LC‑MS/MS) has long been considered the reference standard owing to its high accuracy, specificity, and sensitivity. However, large numbers of blood samples, multi‑step preparation procedures, and longer analytical times (2.5‑20 min) are required as a consequence of the different technical strategies, to ensure good analytical performance and routine quality assurance. A stable, reliable, and high throughput detection method will save personnel time and reduce laboratory costs. Therefore, a high throughput and simple LC‑MS/MS method was developed and validated for the detection of whole‑blood CSA with CSA‑d12 as the internal standard in the present study. Whole blood samples were prepared through a modified one‑step protein precipitation method. A C18 column (50x2.1 mm, 2.7 µm) with a mobile phase flow rate of 0.5 ml/min was used for chromatographic separation with a total running time of 4.3 min to avoid the matrix effect. To protect the mass spectrometer, only part of the sample after LC separation was allowed to enter the mass spectrum, using two HPLC systems coupled to one mass spectrometry. In this way, throughput was improved with detection of two samples possible within 4.3 min using a shorter analytical time for each sample of 2.15 min. This modified LC‑MS/MS method showed excellent analytical performance and demonstrated less matrix effect and a wide linear range. The design of multi‑LC systems coupled with one mass spectrometry may play a notable role in the improvement of daily detection throughput, speeding up LC‑MS/MS, and allowing it to be an integral part of continuous diagnostics in the near future.