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J Pharm Biomed Anal. 2007 Sep 21;45(1):38-46. Epub 2007 May 25.

Chromatographic fingerprint analysis of Cephalotaxus sinensis from various sources by high-performance liquid chromatography-diodearray detection-electrospray ionization-tandem mass spectrometry.

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School of Life Science and Technology, Beijing Institute of Technology, No. 5 Zhongguancun South Street, Beijing 100081, PR China.


Selective and efficient analytical methods are required not only for quality assurance but also for authentication of Chinese herbal medicine. A simple, rapid and valid fingerprint method has been first carried out for the quality control of Cephalotaxus sinensis by using high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) coupled with photodiode array detection (DAD) and electrospray ionisation-tandem mass spectrometry (ESI-MS). The characteristic analytical fingerprints of this plant extract showed 18 common peaks, and out of these, 10 compounds involving 2 new compounds were identified by comparing the retention time, UV and ESI-MS/MS spectrum of each standard with those of each peak separated by on-line HPLC-DAD-MS/MS. Moreover, the effects of collecting locations, harvesting time, storage time, drying methods, and medicinal portions on herbal chromatographic fingerprints were examined by similarity analysis and principal component analysis (PCA) along with markers. Using the reference fingerprint along with markers, the best harvesting time, cultivation location and medicinal part were determined. The results obtained suggest that the chromatographic fingerprint combining similarity evaluation and PCA along with markers or pharmacologically active constituents can efficiently identify raw herb of Cephalotaxus sinensis from different sources, which provide helpful clues to the study of plant's secondary metabolites and benefit quality control.

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