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J Chromatogr A. 2010 Oct 8;1217(41):6413-21. doi: 10.1016/j.chroma.2010.08.016. Epub 2010 Aug 13.

A generic static headspace gas chromatography method for determination of residual solvents in drug substance.

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Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK 73019, USA.


In order to increase productivity of drug analysis in the pharmaceutical industry, an efficient and sensitive generic static headspace gas chromatography (HSGC) method was successfully developed and validated for the determination of 44 classes 2 and 3 solvents of International Conference of Harmonization (ICH) guideline Q3C, as residual solvents in drug substance. In order to increase the method sensitivity and efficiency in sample equilibration, dimethylsulfoxide (DMSO) was selected as the sample diluent based on its high capacity of dissolving drug substance, stability and high boiling point. The HS sample equilibration temperature and equilibration time are assessed in ranges of 125-150°C and 8-15 min, respectively. The results indicate that the residual solvents in 200mg of drug substance can be equilibrated efficiently in HS sampler at 140°C for 10 min. The GC parameters, e.g. sample split ratio, carrier flow rate and oven temperature gradient are manipulated to enhance the method sensitivity and separation efficiency. The two-stage gradient GC run from 35 to 240°C, using an Agilent DB-624 capillary column (30 m long, 0.32 mm I.D., 1.8 μm film thickness), is suitable to determine 44 ICH classes 2 and 3 solvents in 30 min. The method validation results indicate that the method is accurate, precise, linear and sensitive for solvents assessed. The recoveries of most of these solvents from four drug substances are greater than 80% within the method determination ranges. However, this method is not suitable for the 10 remaining ICH classes 2 and 3 solvents, because they are too polar (e.g. formic acid and acidic acid), or have boiling points higher than 150°C, (e.g. anisol and cumene). In comparison with the previous published methods, this method has a much shorter sample equilibration time, a better separation for many solvents, a higher sensitivity and a broader concentration range.

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