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Talanta. 2005 Oct 31;67(5):984-91. doi: 10.1016/j.talanta.2005.04.026.

Analysis of scopolamine and its eighteen metabolites in rat urine by liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry.

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College of Chemistry and Molecular Science, Wuhan University, 430072, China; College of Life Science, Hubei University, 430062, China.


A rapid and sensitive method is described for the determination of scopolamine and its metabolites in rat urine by combining liquid chromatography and tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). Various extraction techniques (free fraction, acid hydrolyses and enzyme hydrolyses) and their comparison were carried out for investigation of the metabolism of scopolamine. After extraction procedure, the pretreated samples were injected into a reversed-phase C18 column with mobile phase of methanol/ ammonium acetate (2mM, adjusted to pH 3.5 with formic acid) (70:30, v/v) and detected by an on-line MS/MS system. Identification and structural elucidation of the metabolites were performed by comparing their changes in molecular masses (DeltaM), retention-times and full scan MS(n) spectra with those of the parent drug. The results revealed that at least 18 metabolites (norscopine, scopine, tropic acid, aponorscopolamine, aposcopolamine, norscopolamine, hydroxyscopolamine, hydroxyscopolamine N-oxide, p-hydroxy-m-methoxyscopolamine, trihydroxyscopolamine, dihydroxy-methoxyscopolamine, hydroxyl-dimethoxyscopolamine, glucuronide conjugates and sulfate conjugates of norscopolamine, hydroxyscopolamine and the parent drug) and the parent drug existed in urine after ingesting 55mg/kg scopolamine to healthy rats. Hydroxyscopolamine, p-hydroxy-m-methoxyscopolamine and the parent drug were detected in rat urine for up 106h after ingestion of scopolamine.

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