Quantification of Tricyclic Antidepressants in Serum Using Liquid Chromatography Electrospray Tandem Mass Spectrometry (HPLC-ESI-MS/MS)
Tricyclic antidepressants (TCA) are used to treat major depressive disorder and other psychological conditions. The efficacy of these drugs is tied to a narrow therapeutic window. Inappropriately high drug concentrations can result in serious side effects such as hypotension, tachycardia, or coma. As a result, concentrations of tricyclic antidepressants are routinely monitored to ensure compliance and to prevent adverse side effects by dose adjustments. We describe a method for the determination of concentrations of amitriptyline, desipramine, imipramine, and nortriptyline in human serum using high-performance liquid chromatography coupled to a tandem mass spectrometer with electrospray ionization (HPLC-ESI-MS/MS). The method is rapid, requiring only 3.5 min per analysis. The method requires 100 μL of serum. Concentrations of each TCA were quantified by a calibration curve relating the peak area ratio of each TCA analyte to a deuterated internal standard (amitriptyline-D3, desipramine-D3, imipramine-D3, and nortriptyline-D3). The method was linear from ~70 ng/mL to ~1000 ng/mL for all TCAs, with imprecision ≤ 12 %.
Key wordsTricyclic antidepressants Depression Tandem mass spectrometer Amitriptyline Desipramine Imipramine Nortriptyline
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