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J Chromatogr B Analyt Technol Biomed Life Sci. 2008 Aug 1;871(1):135-40. doi: 10.1016/j.jchromb.2008.06.049. Epub 2008 Jul 5.

Simultaneous analysis of 17alpha-estradiol and 17beta-estradiol in bovine serum by liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry.

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  • 1Istituto Superiore di Sanità, Department of Food Safety and Veterinary Public Health, Rome, Italy.


A new LC-MS/MS method for the separation, identification and quantification of residues of 17alpha-estradiol (17alpha-E2) and 17beta-estradiol (17beta-E2) in bovine serum is reported. Deuterium-labelled 17beta-estradiol was used as internal standard. The method was in-house validated in accordance with European Union criteria and adopted in a proficiency study organised by the Community Reference Laboratory (CRL-RIVM, Bilthoven, The Netherlands). The analytes were extracted from serum using acetate buffer, purified by C18 solid-phase extraction (SPE) and chromatographed on a C18 LC column. They were then ionized in a heated nebulizer (HN) interface operating in negative ion mode, where only intact deprotonated molecules, [M-H](-), were generated at m/z 271 and 274 for 17alpha/17beta-E2 and 17beta-E2-d(3), respectively. The decision limits obtained (CCalpha, i.e., critical concentration alpha) were 0.06 ng/mL and 0.03 ng/mL, respectively for 17alpha-E2 and 17beta-E2. Detection capability (CCbeta, i.e., critical concentration beta) values were 0.08 ng/mL and 0.04 ng/mL, respectively, for 17alpha-E2 and 17beta-E2. Precision, accuracy and specificity were satisfactory, recovery ranged from 86.3% to 93.2% and the method resulted sensitive for the required purposes. This method is currently in use for Official Control purposes.

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