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J Chromatogr A. 2000 Jul 28;887(1-2):489-96.

Analysis of hydroquinone and some of its ethers by using capillary electrochromatography.

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Istituto di Cromatografia del Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche, Area della Ricerca di Roma, Rome, Italy.


Capillary electrochromatography (CEC) was used for the analysis of relevant compounds in cosmetic preparation. Hydroquinone (HQ) and some of its ethers (methyl-, dimethyl-, benzyl-, phenyl-, propyl-HQ derivatives) were analyzed by using an octadecylsilica (ODS) stationary phase packed in fused-silica capillary (100 microm I.D.; 30 cm and 21.5 cm total and effective lengths, respectively). 20 mM Ammonium acetate pH 6-acetonitrile (50-70%) were the mobile phases used for the experiments. The acetonitrile (ACN) content strongly influenced the resolution of the studied compounds as well as the efficiency and the retention factor. Baseline resolution for the studied analytes was achieved at both the lowest and the highest percentage of ACN, the last one providing the shortest analysis time. Mobile phase containing 70% of ACN was therefore used for the analysis of an extract of skin-toning cream declared to contain HQ. Good repeatability of both retention times, peak areas and peak areas ratio (Asample/Ainternational standard) was found. The calibration graphs were linear in the concentration range studied (5-90 microg/ml) with correlation coefficients between 0.9975 and 09991. The analysis of the cosmetic preparation revealed the presence of HQ (1.72%, w/w) and of two additional peaks (not identified).

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