Quantitation of Teriflunomide in Human Serum/Plasma Across a 40,000-Fold Concentration Range by LC/MS/MS

  • Geoffrey S. RuleEmail author
  • Alan L. Rockwood
  • Kamisha L. Johnson-Davis
Part of the Methods in Molecular Biology book series (MIMB, volume 1383)


Leflunomide is a prodrug used primarily for treatment of rheumatoid arthritis. The active metabolite, teriflunomide (A77 1726), inhibits the enzyme dihydroorotate dehydrogenase and thereby reduces the synthesis of pyrimidine ribonucleotides. Teriflunomide is also administered directly and finds use in treating multiple sclerosis. Therapeutic concentrations are generally in the tens of μg/mL serum or plasma and, due to adverse effects and the time required to reach steady state, therapeutic drug monitoring is beneficial. The drug is also a potential teratogen.

A method was developed and validated to quantify the drug teriflunomide over a 40,000-fold concentration range of 5 ng/mL to 200 μg/mL in serum or plasma. This is accomplished by dividing the quantitative range into two separate but overlapping regions; a high curve and a low curve range. Samples are evaluated first against the high curve after a 100-fold dilution of the sample extract. Samples falling below the upper curve region are evaluated again without dilution and quantified, if possible, against the low curve calibration standards. Appropriate choice of a concentration for the deuterated internal standard (D4-teriflunomide) allows for a single, identical, extraction procedure to be performed for both curve regions but with the dilution performed for high curve samples. The method is rugged and reliable with good accuracy and precision statistics.

Key words

Leflunomide Teriflunomide Dynamic range LC/MS/MS Arthritis 



The authors would like to thank the ARUP Institute for Clinical and Experimental Pathology for making this work possible.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Geoffrey S. Rule
    • 1
    Email author
  • Alan L. Rockwood
    • 2
  • Kamisha L. Johnson-Davis
    • 3
  1. 1.Institute for Clinical and Experimental PathologyARUP LaboratoriesSalt Lake CityUSA
  2. 2.Department of PathologyUniversity of Utah School of MedicineSalt Lake CityUSA
  3. 3.Department of PathologyUniversity of Utah School of Medicine, ARUP Institute for Clinical and Experimental PathologySalt Lake CityUSA

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