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Talanta. 2016 May 1;151:75-82. doi: 10.1016/j.talanta.2016.01.022. Epub 2016 Jan 13.

Propylene carbonate quantification by its derivative 3,5-diacetyl-1,4-dihydro-2,6-lutidine.

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Department of Pharmaceutics, Pharmaceutical Institute, University of Bonn, Gerhard-Domagk-Str. 3, 53121 Bonn, Germany. Electronic address:
Pharmaceutical Chemistry I, Pharmaceutical Institute, University of Bonn, Brühler Str. 7, 53119 Bonn, Germany.
Department of Pharmaceutical Technology, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Sarajevo, Zmaja od Bosne 8, 71 000 Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Department of Pharmaceutics, Pharmaceutical Institute, University of Bonn, Gerhard-Domagk-Str. 3, 53121 Bonn, Germany; FDE (EA4267), University of Dijon/Franche-Comté, 19 rue Ambroise Paré, 25030 Besançon Cedex, France. Electronic address:


Propylene carbonate (PC) is a non-toxic solvent currently used in various pharmaceutical formulations. Consequently, a simple, cost-effective and most accurate analytical method for the quantification of this optical inert solvent is of major interest. Based on a consecutive three-step reaction 3,5-diacetyl-1,4-dihydro-2,6-lutidine was obtained from PC and used for quantification by either UV and fluorescent detection. Data were compared with results from LC-ESI-MS as a reference method. After using Mandel's test for linearity assessment of the calibration curves, linear fitting was used for LC-ESI-MS and spectrofluorimetry, while a polynomial 3rd order curve fitting was used for spectrophotometry. High intra- and inter-day precision as well as high accuracy were confirmed for all three analytical methods (spectrophotometry, spectrofluorimetry and LC-ESI-MS). The comparison of all three methods was assessed using correlation coefficients and Bland-Altman plots, both showing satisfying results with a high degree of agreement. The new method confirmed its applicability for PC quantification in two formulations, namely a PC-enriched cream and polyester microimplants. This new quantification method for PC is a reliable alternative to highly sophisticated chromatographic methods.


Dihydropyridine condensation; LC-ESI-MS; Propylene carbonate; Residual solvent quantification

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