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Chem Res Toxicol. 2009 Feb;22(2):299-310. doi: 10.1021/tx800251p.

Nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy as a quantitative tool to determine the concentrations of biologically produced metabolites: implications in metabolites in safety testing.

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Drug Safety and Metabolism, Wyeth Research, 500 Arcola Road, Collegeville, Pennsylvania 19426, USA.


Nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy has traditionally been considered as an indispensable tool in elucidating structures of metabolites. With the advent of Fourier transform (FT) spectrometers, along with improvements in software and hardware (such as high-field magnets, cryoprobes, versatile pulse sequences, and solvent suppression techniques), NMR is increasingly being considered as a critical quantitative tool, despite its lower sensitivity as compared to mass spectrometry. A specific quantitative application of NMR is in determining the concentrations of biologically isolated metabolites, which could potentially be used as reference standards for further quantitative work by liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry. With the recent demands from regulatory agencies on quantitative information on metabolites, it is proposed that NMR will play a significant role in strategies aimed at addressing metabolite coverage in toxicological species. Traditionally, biologically isolated metabolites have not been considered as a way of generating "reference standards" for further quantitative work. However, because of the recent FDA guidance on safety testing of metabolites, one has to consider means of authenticating and quantitating biologically or nonbiologically generated metabolites. 1H NMR is being proposed as the method of choice, as it is able to be used as both a qualitative and a quantitative tool, hence allowing structure determination, purity check, and quantitative measurement of the isolated metabolite. In this publication, the application of NMR as a powerful and robust analytical technique in determining the concentrations of in vitro or in vivo isolated metabolites is discussed. Furthermore, to demonstrate the reliability and accuracy of metabolite concentrations determined by NMR, validation and cross-validation with gravimetric and mass spectrometric methods were conducted.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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