bims-metlip Biomed News
on Methods and protocols in metabolomics and lipidomics
Issue of 2022‒08‒07
29 papers selected by
Sofia Costa

  1. Anal Chem. 2022 Aug 04.
      We report a segmented spectrum scan method using Orbitrap MS in chemical isotope labeling (CIL) liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS) for improving the metabolite detection efficiency. In this method, the full m/z range is divided into multiple segments with the scanning of each segment to produce multiple narrow-range spectra during the LC data acquisition. These segmented spectra are separately processed to extract the peak pair information with each peak pair arising from a differentially labeled metabolite in the analysis of a mixture of 13C and 12C reagent-labeled samples. The sublists of peak pairs are merged to form the final peak pair list from the LC-MS run. Various experimental conditions, including automatic gain control (AGC) values, mass resolutions, segment m/z widths, number of segments, and total data acquisition time in the LC run, were examined to arrive at an optimal setting in the segment scan for increasing the number of detectable metabolites while maintaining the same analysis time as in the full scan. The optimal method used a segment width of 120 m/z with 60k resolution for a 16 min CIL LC-MS run. Using dansyl-labeled human urine samples as an example, we demonstrated that this method could detect 5867 peak pairs or metabolites (not features), compared to 3765 peak pairs detectable in a full scan, representing a 56% gain. Out of 5867 peak pairs, 5575 (95.0%) could be identified or mass-matched. The relative quantification accuracy was slightly reduced (81% peak pairs were within ±25% of the expected peak ratio of 1.0 in full, compared to 87% in the full scan) due to the inclusion of more low-abundance peak pairs in the segment scan. The peak ratio measurement precision was not significantly affected by the segment scan. We also showed the increase of the peak pair number detectable from 3843 in the full scan to 7273 (89% gain) using the Orbitrap operated at 120k resolution with a 60 m/z segment width when multiple repeat sample injections were used. Thus, segment scan Orbitrap MS is an enabling method for detecting coeluting metabolites in CIL LC-MS for increasing the metabolomic coverage.
  2. J Chromatogr B Analyt Technol Biomed Life Sci. 2022 Jul 25. pii: S1570-0232(22)00282-3. [Epub ahead of print]1208 123378
      Co-exposure to tobacco and marijuana has become common in areas where recreational marijuana use is legal. To assist in the determination of the combined health risks of this co-exposure, an analytical method capable of simultaneously measuring tobacco and marijuana metabolites is needed to reduce laboratory costs and the required sample volume. So far, no such analytical method exists. Thus, we developed and validated a method to simultaneously quantify urinary levels of trans-3'-hydroxycotinine (3OH-COT), cotinine (COT), and 11-nor-9-carboxy-Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (COOH-THC) to assess co-exposure to tobacco and marijuana. Urine (200 µL) was spiked with labelled internal standards and enzymatically hydrolyzed to liberate the conjugated analytes before extraction using solid-supported liquid-liquid extraction (SLE) with ethyl acetate serving as an eluent. The target analytes were separated on a C18 (4.6 × 100 mm, 5 μm) analytical column with a gradient mobile phase elution and analyzed using tandem mass spectrometry with multiple reaction monitoring of target ion transitions. Positive electrospray ionization (ESI) was used for 3OH-COT and COT, while negative ESI was used for COOH-THC. The total run time was 13 min. The extraction recoveries were 18.4-23.9 % (3OH-COT), 65.1-96.8 % (COT), and 80.6-95.4 % (COOH-THC). The method limits of quantification were 5.0 ng/mL (3OH-COT) and 2.5 ng/mL (COT and COOH-THC). The method showed good accuracy (82.5-98.5 %) and precision (1.22-6.21 % within-day precision and 1.42-6.26 % between-day precision). The target analytes were stable for at least 144 h inside the autosampler (10 °C). The analyses of reference materials and 146 urine samples demonstrated good method performance. The use of a 96-well plate for preparation makes the method useful for the analysis of large numbers of samples.
    Keywords:  11-nor-9-carboxy-delta 9-tetrahydrocannabinol; Cotinine; Marijuana metabolites; Supported liquid extraction; Tobacco metabolites; Trans-3′-hydroxycotinine
  3. Metabolomics. 2022 Aug 02. 18(8): 64
      INTRODUCTION: Flow infusion electrospray high resolution mass spectrometry (FIE-HRMS) fingerprinting produces complex, high dimensional data sets which require specialist in-silico software tools to process the data prior to analysis.OBJECTIVES: Present spectral binning as a pragmatic approach to post-acquisition procession of FIE-HRMS metabolome fingerprinting data.
    METHODS: A spectral binning approach was developed that included the elimination of single scan m/z events, the binning of spectra and the averaging of spectra across the infusion profile. The modal accurate m/z was then extracted for each bin. This approach was assessed using four different biological matrices and a mix of 31 known chemical standards analysed by FIE-HRMS using an Exactive Orbitrap. Bin purity and centrality metrics were developed to objectively assess the distribution and position of accurate m/z within an individual bin respectively.
    RESULTS: The optimal spectral binning width was found to be 0.01 amu. 80.8% of the extracted accurate m/z matched to predicted ionisation products of the chemical standards mix were found to have an error of below 3 ppm. The open-source R package binneR was developed as a user friendly implementation of the approach. This was able to process 100 data files using 4 Central Processing Units (CPU) workers in only 55 seconds with a maximum memory usage of 1.36 GB.
    CONCLUSION: Spectral binning is a fast and robust method for the post-acquisition processing of FIE-HRMS data. The open-source R package binneR allows users to efficiently process data from FIE-HRMS experiments with the resources available on a standard desktop computer.
    Keywords:  Mass spectrometry; Metabolomic fingerprinting; Post-acquisition processing; Software
  4. Angew Chem Int Ed Engl. 2022 Aug 03.
      Although chemoselective labeling strategy shows great potential in deep description on metabolomics, the long strategy time and expensive cost can limit its application in high-throughput and routine analysis. Herein, we report a fast and effective chemoselective labeling strategy based on multi-functionalized monolithic probes. A rapid pH-responsive boronate ester reaction was employed to immobilize and release probe molecules from substrate in 5 min. The mesoporous surface and hierarchically porous channels of substrate allowed for accelerated labeling reactions. Moreover, the discernible boron beacons allowed for recognition of labeled metabolites with no need of expensive isotopic encoding. This new strategy has been successfully used for submetabolome analysis of yeast cells, serum and feces samples, with improved sensitivity for short chain fatty acids up to 1,600 times compared with non-labeling LC-MS methods.
    Keywords:  accelerated reactions; chemoselective probe; fast labeling; metabolome analysis
  5. J Am Soc Mass Spectrom. 2022 Aug 01.
      Steroids are an important class of biomolecules studied for their role in metabolism, development, nutrition, and disease. Although highly sensitive GC- and LC-MS/MS-based methods have been developed for targeted quantitation of known steroid metabolites, emerging techniques including ion mobility (IM) have shown promise in improved analysis and capacity to better identify unknowns in complex biological samples. Herein, we couple LC-IM-MS/MS with structurally selective reactions targeting hydroxyl and carbonyl functional groups to improve IM resolution and structural elucidation. We demonstrate that 1,1-carbonyldiimidazole derivatization of hydroxyl stereoisomer pairs such as testosterone/epitestosterone and androsterone/epiandrosterone results in increased IM resolution with ΔCCS > 15%. Additionally, performing this in parallel with derivatization of the carbonyl group by Girard's Reagent P resulted in unique products based on relative differences in number of each functional group and C17 alkylation. These changes could be easily deciphered using the combination of retention time, collision cross section, accurate mass, and MS/MS fragmentation pattern. Derivatization by Girard's Reagent P, which contains a fixed charge quaternary amine, also increased the ionization efficiency and could be explored for its potential benefit to sensitivity. Overall, the combination of these simple and easy derivatization reactions with LC-IM-MS/MS analysis provides a method for improved analysis of known target analytes while also yielding critical structural information that can be used for identification of potential unknowns.
    Keywords:  Derivatization; Ion Mobility-Mass Spectrometry; Shift Reagents; Steroids
  6. Methods. 2022 Jul 28. pii: S1046-2023(22)00168-2. [Epub ahead of print]
      NMR is a very powerful tool for identifying and quantifying compounds within complex mixtures without the need for individual standards or chromatographic separation. Stable Isotope Resolved Metabolomics (or SIRM) is an approach to following the fate of individual atoms from precursors through metabolic transformation, producing an atom-resolved metabolic fate map. However, extracts of cells or tissue give rise to very complex NMR spectra. While multidimensional NMR experiments may partially overcome the spectral overlap problem, additional tools may be needed to determine site-specific isotopomer distributions. NMR is especially powerful by virtue of its isotope editing capabilities using NMR active nuclei such as 13C, 15N, 19F and 31P to select molecules containing just these atoms in a complex mixture, and provide direct information about which atoms are present in identified compounds and their relative abundances. The isotope-editing capability of NMR can also be employed to select for those compounds that have been selectively derivatized with an NMR-active stable isotope at particular functional groups, leading to considerable spectral simplification. Here we review isotope analysis by NMR, and methods of chemoselection both for spectral simplification, and for enhanced isotopomer analysis.
    Keywords:  Isotopomer distribution analysis; Stable isotope resolved metabolomics; chemoselection
  7. Front Mol Biosci. 2022 ;9 857505
      Covering a wide spectrum of molecules is essential for global metabolome assessment. While metabolomics assays are most frequently carried out in microbore LC-MS analysis, reducing the size of the analytical platform has proven its ability to boost sensitivity for specific -omics applications. In this study, we elaborate the impact of LC miniaturization on exploratory small-molecule LC-MS analysis, focusing on chromatographic properties with critical impact on peak picking and statistical analysis. We have assessed a panel of small molecules comprising endogenous metabolites and environmental contaminants covering three flow regimes-analytical, micro-, and nano-flow. Miniaturization to the micro-flow regime yields moderately increased sensitivity as compared to the nano setup, where median sensitivity gains around 80-fold are observed in protein-precipitated blood plasma extract. This gain resulting in higher coverage at low µg/L concentrations is compound dependent. At the same time, the nano-LC-high-resolution mass spectrometry (HRMS) approach reduces the investigated chemical space as a consequence of the trap-and-elute nano-LC platform. Finally, while all three setups show excellent retention time stabilities, rapid gradients jeopardize the peak area repeatability of the nano-LC setup. Micro-LC offers the best compromise between improving signal intensity and metabolome coverage, despite the fact that only incremental gains can be achieved. Hence, we recommend using micro-LC for wide-target small-molecule trace bioanalysis and global metabolomics of abundant samples.
    Keywords:  LC-MS; chromatography; coverage; exposomics; metabolomics; miniaturization; sensitivity
  8. J Vis Exp. 2022 Jul 14.
      Lipid profiling, or lipidomics, is a well-established technique used to study the entire lipid content of a cell or tissue. Information acquired from lipidomics is valuable in studying the pathways involved in development, disease, and cellular metabolism. Many tools and instrumentations have aided lipidomics projects, most notably various combinations of mass spectrometry and liquid chromatography techniques. Matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization mass spectrometry imaging (MALDI MSI) has recently emerged as a powerful imaging technique that complements conventional approaches. This novel technique provides unique information on the spatial distribution of lipids within tissue compartments, which was previously unattainable without the use of excessive modifications. The sample preparation of the MALDI MSI approach is critical and, therefore, is the focus of this paper. This paper presents a rapid lipid analysis of a large number of Drosophila brains embedded in optimal cutting temperature compound (OCT) to provide a detailed protocol for the preparation of small tissues for lipid analysis or metabolite and small molecule analysis through MALDI MSI.
  9. Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci. 2022 Jul;pii: 29289. [Epub ahead of print]26(14): 5033-5042
      OBJECTIVE: Synthetic cathinones (SCs) are new psychoactive substances with sympathomimetic effects, which emerged into the illegal drug market to replace controlled stimulants. Since every year more powerful and toxic substances enter the illicit market, there is the need for analytical methodologies able to detect these new compounds in conventional and non-conventional biological matrices. We sought to develop and validate a targeted screening and quantification method for thirty-two parent SCs and two metabolites in hair samples by ultra-high-performance liquid chromatography coupled to high resolution mass spectrometry (UHPLC-HRMS).MATERIALS AND METHODS: 20 mg hair samples were soaked in 250 µL of 2 mM ammonium formate, methanol and acetonitrile mixture (50/25/25, v/v/v) and incubated overnight at 40°C. After incubation, the samples were evaporated to dryness under nitrogen stream and reconstituted with 100 µL of mobile phase mix (A:B, 80:20) and 10 µL were injected into UHPLC-HRMS. A Q ExactiveTM Focus Orbitrap Mass spectrometer with full scan and targeted data-dependent MS/MS scan acquisition was used for the screening and quantitation analysis.
    RESULTS: The assay was linear from 5 to 500 pg/mg hair for all the analytes under investigation. Intra-day and inter-day precision were always < 15% and matrix effect and analytical recovery were always within acceptable criteria (±25% and >50%, respectively). The developed method was applied to authentic hair samples from SCs consumers. The most prevalent found SCs were 3,4-Methylenedioxy-α-Pyrrolidinohexanophenone with a concentration range of 6.0-1,000.0 pg/mg along with α-Pyrrolidinohexiophenone (54.0 and 554.0 pg/mg, respectively), 3-Methylmetcathinone (556.0 and 5,000.0 pg/mg) and 4-Methylethcathinone (11.5 and 448.0 pg/mg) CONCLUSIONS: The developed method showed good selectivity, specificity, an easy and low-cost sample preparation and an analysis time compatible with a high throughput laboratory.
  10. J Mass Spectrom Adv Clin Lab. 2022 Aug;25 44-52
      Introduction: Preoperative diagnostic workup of adrenal tumors is based on imaging and hormone analyses, but charged with uncertainties. Steroid profiling by liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) in 24-h urine has shown potential to discriminate benign and malignant adrenal tumors. Our aim was to develop and validate a specific and accurate LC-MS/MS method for the quantification of deconjugated urinary marker steroids, to evaluate their pre-analytical stability and to apply the method to clinical samples of patients with adrenal tumors.Methods: A method for the quantification of 11 deconjugated steroids (5-pregnenetriol, dehydroepiandrosterone, cortisone, cortisol, α-cortolone, tetrahydro-11-deoxycortisol, etiocholanolone, pregnenolone, pregnanetriol, pregnanediol, and 5-pregnenediol) in human urine was developed and validated based on international guidelines. Steroids were enzymatically deconjugated and extracted by solid phase extraction before LC-MS/MS quantification in positive electrospray ionization mode.
    Results: Excellent linearity with R2 > 0.99 and intra- and inter-day precisions of < 10.1 % were found. Relative matrix effects were between 96.4 % and 101.6 % and relative recovery was between 98.2 % and 115.0 %. Sufficient pre-freeze stability for all steroids in urine was found at 20-25 °C for seven days and at 4-6 °C for up to 28 days. Samples were stable during long-term storage at -20 °C and -80 °C for 6 months.
    Conclusions: A sensitive and robust LC-MS/MS method for the quantification of 11 urinary steroids was developed and validated according to international guidelines. Pre-analytical matrix stability was evaluated and the suitability of the method for the analysis of clinical samples and prospective validation studies was shown.
    Keywords:  5-PD, 5-pregnen-3β,20α-diol; 5-PT, 5-pregnen-3β,17,20α-triol; ACA, adrenocortical adenoma; ACC, adrenocortical carcinoma; Adrenal tumors; Adrenocortical carcinoma; DHEA, dehydroepiandrosterone; Etio, etiocholanolone; IS, internal standard; LC-MS/MS, liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry; LC–MS/MS; LLOQ, lower limit of quantification; MRM, multiple reaction monitoring; Mass spectrometry; PD, 5β-pregnan-3α,20α-diol; PT, 5β-pregnan-3α,17,20α-triol; QC, quality control; R2, coefficient of determination; SPE, solid phase extraction; Steroid profiling; ULOQ, upper limit of quantification; Urinary steroids
  11. Adv Exp Med Biol. 2022 ;1400 105-119
      ABSVTRACT: Schizophrenia, as any other psychiatric disorder, is a multifactorial and complex illness whose etiology is not completely established. Therefore, studies involving strategies that are able to describe the molecular alterations caused by the disease and, consequently, indicate the altered metabolic pathways are of increasing interest. Metabolomics is a very suitable approach that can be applied for this task, since it consists of the evaluation of the set of metabolites contained in a biological system undergoing a biological process, such as a disease or treatment. In metabolomics, state-of-the-art analytical techniques (mass spectrometry and nuclear magnetic resonance) are employed to identify and quantify the metabolites present in the studied biological samples, and chemometric and bioinformatic tools are applied to determine the specific metabolites and metabolic pathways that are relevant to the biological process under investigation. The aim of this chapter is to describe the basic principles of metabolomics, how this strategy can improve the understanding of the schizophrenia biology, and the findings obtained so far.
    Keywords:  Bioinformatics; Chemometrics; Mass spectrometry; Metabolomics; Nuclear magnetic resonance; Schizophrenia
  12. Chem Sci. 2022 Jul 13. 13(27): 8065-8073
      While single-cell mass spectrometry can reveal cellular heterogeneity and the molecular mechanisms of intracellular biochemical reactions, its application is limited by the insufficient detection sensitivity resulting from matrix interference and sample dilution. Herein, we propose an intact living-cell electrolaunching ionization mass spectrometry (ILCEI-MS) method. A capillary emitter with a narrow-bore, constant-inner-diameter ensures that the entire living cell enters the MS ion-transfer tube. Inlet ionization improves sample utilization, and no solvent is required, preventing sample dilution and matrix interference. Based on these features, the detection sensitivity is greatly improved, and the average signal-to-noise (S/N) ratio is about 20 : 1 of single-cell peaks in the TIC of ILCEI-MS. A high detection throughput of 51 cells per min was achieved by ILCEI-MS for the single-cell metabolic profiling of multiple cell lines, and 368 cellular metabolites were identified. Further, more than 4000 primary single cells digested from the fresh multi-organ tissues of mice were detected by ILCEI-MS, demonstrating its applicability and reliability.
  13. J Chromatogr A. 2022 Jul 23. pii: S0021-9673(22)00559-3. [Epub ahead of print]1678 463366
      Sexual enhancement dietary supplements have often been adulterated with phosphodiesterase type 5 (PDE-5) inhibitors used for treatment of erectile dysfunction, and widely distributed through online markets. As the illegal adulterants, the original PDE-5 inhibitor drugs and a numerous number of synthetized analogues, more than 80, have already been found. Therefore, analytical methods that detect various PDE-5 inhibitors and uncover newly synthesized analogues are needed. In this study, we have developed a rapid and reliable screening method for PDE-5 inhibitors and their structural analogues by using liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) followed by hierarchical clustering based on similarity of MS/MS spectra. Forty reference standards of PDE-5 inhibitors/analogues were measured using a quadrupole-orbitrap mass spectrometer in data-dependent mode. The 60 most intense fragment ions were extracted from each MS/MS spectra, and the ions observed within 1.5 mDa mass tolerance were considered to be the same ion. Based on fragment ion tables representing detected ions for each compound, hierarchical clustering was performed. The resulting dendrogram showed that the reference standards were separated into seven clusters according to their characteristic structures. Subsequently, two additional standards spiked into a herbal sample were analyzed. While herbal components were clearly separated from the clusters of the reference standards, the spiked standards were clustered closely with the structurally similar standards. Furthermore, application of our method to dietary supplements allowed for detection of sildenafil and tadalafil as adulterants. These results suggest that our screening method facilitates discovery of adulterant PDE-5 inhibitors/analogues by illustrating their structural similarity.
    Keywords:  Erectile dysfunction drugs; Hierarchical clustering; Liquid chromatography-quadrupole-orbitrap mass spectrometry; MS/MS spectral similarity; Phosphodiesterase type 5 inhibitors
  14. J Pharm Biomed Anal. 2022 Jul 15. pii: S0731-7085(22)00360-0. [Epub ahead of print]219 114939
      Ion-mobility mass spectrometry (IM-MS) currently serves as a powerful tool for the structural identification of numerous biological compounds and small molecules. In this work, rapid metabolomic analysis of closely-related herbal medicines by direct injection ion mobility-quadrupole time-of-flight mass spectrometry (DI-IM-QTOF MS) was established. Phellodendron chinense Bark (PC) and Phellodendron amurense Bark (PA) were studied as a case. Thirty-three batches of PC and twenty-two batches of PA have been directly injected in electrospray ionization-IM-QTOF MS in positive mode. Without chromatographic separation, each run was completed within 3 min. After data alignment and statistical analysis, a total of seven chemical markers were found (p-value < 0.05, VIP > 1.00). Among them, the ion m/z 342.17 and m/z 356.18 present a single peak in the drift spectrum, respectively, but their drift time has a certain deviation compared with the pure substance of known compounds. In addition, the MS/MS spectra also confirmed that the single peak includes two chemical isomers. To investigate the composition ratio of individual isomers, the calibration curves of relative drift time (rDT) based on the standard superposition method were established, which were found to fit the least square regression. The ion [M]+m/z 342.17 was recognized consisting of magnoflorine (MAG) and phellodendrine (PHE), and their composition ratio in PA and PC samples was calculated. The results were compared with those obtained by the HPLC quantitative method, which produced equivalent quantification results. Our DI-IM-QTOF MS methodology provides an additional methodology for the relative quantification of unresolved isomers in drift tube IM-MS and offers DI-IM-QTOF MS based metabolomics.
    Keywords:  Alkaloids; High-throughput; Metabolomics; Relative quantitation; Unresolved isomers
  15. Klin Lab Diagn. 2022 Jul 18. 67(7): 369-373
      A bioanalytical technique for quantitative determination of MDA by HPLC-MS/MS. The proposed method for determining MDA includes the release stage of bound MDA and excludes the derivatization reaction. The lower limit of quantitative detection was 600 nmol/l, the volume of the required sample was 10 µl, the analysis time was 7 min. The range of concentrations obtained during the study makes it possible to use this bioanalytical technique to determine the concentration of MDA in biological material when assessing physiological and pathological conditions.
    Keywords:  HPLC-MS/MS; malondialdehyde; oxidative stress
  16. Anal Bioanal Chem. 2022 Aug 05.
      Advances in metabolomics have allowed the identification and characterization of saliva metabolites that can be used as biomarkers. However, discrepancies can be noted with the content of the same biomarker being increased or decreased for a given disease. Differences in the way saliva is collected, stored, and/or treated could cause these discrepancies. Indeed, there is no standardized method for saliva sampling and analysis. In this work, two chromatographic modes were used, i.e., RP-LC and HILIC both coupled to MS used in positive and negative ionization modes. The analytical conditions were optimized with a mixture of 90 compounds naturally present in saliva, representative of the wide range of molecular mass and polarity of salivary metabolites and being described as having a differential expression in various pathologies. These four methods were applied to the analysis of saliva samples collected by spitting, aspiration, or Salivette® with or without prior rinsing of the mouth. Rinsing had an effect on some metabolite concentrations. As it can induce an additional parameter of variability to the sampling, it seems therefore preferable to use methods without rinsing while effects of these parameters on the metabolites are investigated. Saliva obtained by spitting and aspiration gave statistically equivalent results for 84% of the metabolites studied. Conversely, Salivette® gave different results since the majority of the metabolites chosen for the study were not quantified in the samples. The Salivette® does not seem therefore to be a suitable sampling method for an untargeted analysis of the salivary metabolome, unlike aspiration and spitting.
    Keywords:  HILIC-MS; RP-LC–MS; Salivary collection; Salivary metabolome
  17. Curr Health Sci J. 2022 Jan-Mar;48(1):48(1): 75-80
      The class of tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs) is represented by a group of compounds which are currently used in the treatment of different types of cancer. These oral medicines present a narrow therapeutic index and a large inter-and intra-individual variability. Within this work, a simple, accurate and rapid reversed phase ultra-high-performance liquid chromatographic (RP-UHPLC) method with mass spectrometric (MS) detection for simultaneous analysis of two TKIs, ibrutinib and ruxolitinib, using pentoxifylline as internal standard (IS) in tablet dosage forms is presented. The separation was carried out on a Waters (Milford, Massachusetts, USA) Arc System coupled with a Waters QDa mass detector. The column used was a Waters CORTECS C18 (4.6×50mm, 2.7μm); a gradient elution was carried out using a mixture of ammonium formate 10 mM aqueous solution and acetonitrile. The flow rate of the mobile phase was set to 0.5mL/min. The column temperature was equilibrated to 40°C. The injected volume was 5μL. All samples were kept at 20°C during the entire analysis. Mass spectra were recorded in positive ionization mode in the range of m/z 100-400 for ruxolitinib and m/z 100-500 for ibrutinib. Quantification was established in single ion recording (SIR) mode for each compound, using pentoxifylline as internal standard. The method was validated according to International Guidelines in terms of stability, limit of detection, limit of quantitation, linearity, precision and accuracy. The validated method can be successfully applied for simultaneous determination of TKIs in tablet dosage forms.
    Keywords:  Ibrutinib; Liquid Chromatography; Mass Spectrometry; Ruxolitinib; Simultaneous Analysis; Tablets
  18. Clin Chem Lab Med. 2022 Aug 02.
      OBJECTIVES: Testosterone testing is relevant for evaluating castration adequacy and diagnosis of castration-resistant prostate cancer (PCa). However, the recommended testosterone cut-off of 1.7 nmol/L (50 ng/dL) to define adequate castration is based on consensus and not validated for the automated immunoassays (AIA) used in today's medical laboratories. Furthermore, appropriate population intervals have not been determined by a state-of-the-art assay. We investigated the analytical suitability of this cut-off and the accuracy of the present-day AIAs for testosterone analysis in castrated PCa patients.METHODS: Leftover serum from 120 PCa patients castrated with luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone agonists was analysed for testosterone by five methods: Architect i2000 (Abbott), Access (Beckman), Cobas 6000 (Roche), Atellica (Siemens), LC-MS/MS. For all assays, the castration 95th, 97.5th and 99th percentile upper limits were determined. Furthermore, Passing-Bablok regression, mean bias and Spearman's correlation coefficients were compared to the LC-MS/MS method and total error based on biological variation.
    RESULTS: All castration upper limits, ranging from 0.472 nmol/L (LC-MS/MS) to 1.25 nmol/L (Access) (95% percentile), were significantly lower than the current castration cut-off (1.7 nmol/L). Slopes of Passing-Bablok regressions comparing the AIA with the LC-MS/MS method ranged from 1.4 (Cobas and Atellica) to 3.8 (Access). The Architect showed the highest correlation with LC-MS/MS (ρ=0.58). All AIA failed to meet the desirable total error criterion.
    CONCLUSIONS: These results suggest that a lower general testosterone castration cut-off may be more appropriate in evaluating the adequacy of castration in PCa and that present-day AIA lack analytical accuracy to quantify testosterone levels in castrated PCa.
    Keywords:  chemical castration; hormone sensitive prostate cancer; immunoassay; liquid chromatography tandem-mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS); population interval; testosterone
  19. Anal Chem. 2022 Aug 02.
      Highly efficient hydrogen-deuterium exchange (HDX) is developed for mass spectrometry imaging (MSI) with low-vacuum matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization (MALDI). A HDX efficiency of 73-85% is achieved by introducing D2O vapor into a heated MALDI source in combination with a deuterium-labeled matrix, which allows correct determination of the number of possible H/D exchanges for up to 17 labile hydrogens. This provides valuable orthogonal information to supplement m/z, allowing for increased confidence in metabolite identification while retaining the spatial information MSI supplies. When combined with high-throughput METASPACE annotation, this approach can systematically improve untargeted metabolite annotations in MALDI-MS imaging. The developed method was applied to MALDI-MS imaging of the top surface, bottom surface, and middle section of Lemna minor fronds. Out of a total of 56 on-sample annotations made with the BraChem database using a 10% false discovery rate, 31 of these annotations (55%) matched our HDX data, providing additional confidence. For the remaining 45%, our data allowed us to narrow down structural possibilities and eliminate incorrect structures, greatly increasing confidence in metabolite identification.
  20. Anal Chem. 2022 Aug 05.
      A cheap, versatile, readily modified, and reusable glass probe system enabling delivery of solid air-/moisture-sensitive samples for mass spectrometric (MS) analysis using an Atmospheric pressure Solids Analysis Probe (ASAP) is described. The simplicity of the design allows quick and easy ASAP MS analyses of sensitive solid and liquid samples without the need for any modifications to commercially available vertically loaded ASAP mass spectrometers. A comparison of ASAP mass spectra obtained for metal complexes under air and an inert atmosphere is given.
  21. J Chromatogr A. 2022 Jul 20. pii: S0021-9673(22)00548-9. [Epub ahead of print]1678 463355
      A novel tandem extraction method based on electromembrane extraction (EME) and slug flow microextraction (SFME) was developed for the extraction of some narcotics (methamphetamine, methadone, tramadol, and buprenorphine) from biological samples. The analytes were quantified by corona discharge-ion mobility spectrometry (CD-IMS). In this method, initially, analytes were extracted using an EME procedure (step-1). After that, the acceptor solution of the first step containing target analytes was applied in an SFME procedure (step-2) as a donor solution for further preconcentration. In the second step, analytes were extracted from an aqueous solution into an organic extractant. The optimum EME and SFME conditions were as follows: type of supported liquid membrane: 2-nitrophenyl octyl ether containing 10% v/v di-(2-ethylhexyl) phosphate, acceptor solution pH: 1.0, sample solution pH: 4.0, voltage: 248 V, extraction time: 17.5 min, tilting number of glass capillary tube: 10 times, type of the organic extractant: toluene, the concentration of NaOH solution: 400 mM. Under optimum extraction conditions, good linearity was obtained in the range of 0.50-750.0 ng/mL with coefficients of determination (r2) ≥ 0.991. The limits of detection and quantification were achieved in the range of 0.15-3.5 ng/mL and 0.50-12.0 ng/mL, respectively. The inter-day and intra-day precisions (n = 3) provided RSDs lower than 12.8% and 12.7%, respectively. Enrichment factors and extraction recoveries of the analytes were in the range of 255.7 to 505.4 and 37.6-78.3%, respectively. Comparing the EME/HPLC-UV with EME-SFME/CD-IMS showed that using the tandem extraction method improved the enrichment factors by more than 2.7 times and limits of detection and quantification by more than 15 times. Finally, this procedure was used to quantify target analytes in plasma and urine samples.
    Keywords:  Biological samples; Electromembrane extraction; Ion mobility spectrometry; Narcotic; Slug flow microextraction
  22. J Magn Reson. 2022 Jul 16. pii: S1090-7807(22)00126-4. [Epub ahead of print]342 107268
      NMR is a valuable experimental tool in the structural biologist's toolkit to elucidate the structures, functions, and motions of biomolecules. The progress of machine learning, particularly in structural biology, reveals the critical importance of large, diverse, and reliable datasets in developing new methods and understanding in structural biology and science more broadly. Biomolecular NMR research groups produce large amounts of data, and there is renewed interest in organizing these data to train new, sophisticated machine learning architectures and to improve biomolecular NMR analysis pipelines. The foundational data type in NMR is the free-induction decay (FID). There are opportunities to build sophisticated machine learning methods to tackle long-standing problems in NMR data processing, resonance assignment, dynamics analysis, and structure determination using NMR FIDs. Our goal in this study is to provide a lightweight, broadly available tool for archiving FID data as it is generated at the spectrometer, and grow a new resource of FID data and associated metadata. This study presents a relational schema for storing and organizing the metadata items that describe an NMR sample and FID data, which we call Spectral Database (SpecDB). SpecDB is implemented in SQLite and includes a Python software library providing a command-line application to create, organize, query, backup, share, and maintain the database. This set of software tools and database schema allow users to store, organize, share, and learn from NMR time domain data. SpecDB is freely available under an open source license at
    Keywords:  Biomolecular NMR; Machine learning; SQL; Spectrum database
  23. Chemosphere. 2022 Jul 31. pii: S0045-6535(22)02308-6. [Epub ahead of print] 135815
      Electrospray ionization (ESI) is the most common technique in liquid chromatography coupled to tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS-MS) allowing for sensitive detection of polar compounds with online water concentration. The technique is popular in groundwater monitoring programs and has permitted great progress in the detection and quantification of polar pesticide transformation products (TP) in recent years. However, ESI is also known to be prone to matrix effects. The common solution to this potential bias is the use of labelled internal standards. Unfortunately, these are not available for all target compounds, which leads to the linkage of target compounds to non-homologue internal standards with unknown consequences for quantification in variable geochemical settings. We investigated these matrix effects for polar TP with a molecular mass range of 225-350 Da and logDpH7 between -0.27 and -1.7 as well as for parent compounds with logDpH3 between 0.84 and 3.22. The acquired set of internal standards were tested on a gradient of DOC, anions, conductivity and inorganic carbon with a set of ten carefully chosen groundwater samples. Internal standards that were measured in positive ionization mode proved to be insensitive to geochemical variations while those that were measured in negative ionization mode showed reduced response with increasing anion concentration. All pairs of internal standards and target analytes were investigated for deviating matrix effects using standard addition experiments. Positive ionization compounds and target compounds with deuterated homologues showed little deviation while non-homologue pairs in negative mode proved to be strongly biased. Although bias was up to factor five for some compounds it was remarkably stable over the entire gradient studied, suggesting an identical suppression mode at varying matrix levels for different compounds. We advocate the conduct of standard addition experiments if homologue internal standards are not available.
    Keywords:  Electrospray ionization; Groundwater geochemistry; Internal standards; LC-MS(2); Matrix effects; Pesticide transformation products
  24. J Mass Spectrom Adv Clin Lab. 2022 Aug;25 53-60
      Introduction: Ocrelizumab is a monoclonal anti-CD20 antibody approved for the treatment of multiple sclerosis (MS). The clinical value of therapeutic drug monitoring (TDM) for this antibody in treatment of MS is unknown, and an adequately specific and precise quantitation method for ocrelizumab in patient serum could facilitate investigation. Liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS)-based quantitation methods have been shown to have higher analytic specificity and precision than enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays.Objectives: To establish and validate an LC-MS/MS-based quantitation method for ocrelizumab.
    Methods: We present an LC-MS/MS-based quantitation method using immunocapture purification followed by trypsinization and analysis by a triple quadrupole mass analyzer obtaining results within the same day.
    Results: We found that the ocrelizumab peptide GLEWVGAIYPGNGDTSYNQK (Q1/Q3 Quantifier ion: 723.683+/590.77 y112+ Qualifier ion: 723.683+/672.30 y122+) can be used for quantitation and thereby developed a method for quantifying ocrelizumab in human serum with a quantitation range of 1.56 to 200 µg/mL. The method was validated in accordance with EMA requirements in terms of selectivity, carry-over, lower limit of quantitation, calibration curve, accuracy, precision and matrix effect. Ocrelizumab serum concentrations were measured in three MS patients treated with ocrelizumab, immediately before and after ocrelizumab infusion, with additional sampling after 2, 4, 8 and 12 weeks. Measured serum concentrations of ocrelizumab showed expected values for both Cmax and drug half-life over the sampled time period.
    Conclusion: We have established a reliable quantitation method for serum ocrelizumab that can be applied in clinical studies, facilitating the evaluation of ocrelizumab TDM in MS.
    Keywords:  EMA, European Medicines Agency; IDA, Information dependent acqusition; IgG1, immunoglobulin G1; LC-MS/MS; LC-MS/MS, Liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry; MS, Multiple sclerosis; MWCO, molecular weight cut-off; Multiple sclerosis; OVERLORD-MS, Ocrelizumab vErsus Rituximab Off-Label at the Onset of Relapsing MS; Ocrelizumab; QTOF, quadrupole time-of-flight; QTRAP, quadrupole ion trap; ROS-MS, Rituximab and Ocrelizumab in Serum with Multiple Sclerosis study; TDM, therapeutic drug monitoring; Therapeutic drug monitoring; Therapeutic monoclonal antibodies; UHPLC, ultra high performance liquid chromatography; t-mAb, therapeutic monoclonal antibody
  25. Steroids. 2022 Aug 02. pii: S0039-128X(22)00134-9. [Epub ahead of print] 109096
      In contrast to a recent study reporting an unexpected significant difference for total 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D) between serum and EDTA plasma, we demonstrate that concentrations of total 25(OH)D, 25(OH)D2, 25(OH)D3 and 24,25(OH)2D3 do not differ between matched serum and EDTA plasma samples, using two well-characterized LC-MS/MS methods.
    Keywords:  25(OH)D; LC-MS/MS; plasma; serum; vitamin D
  26. J Chromatogr A. 2022 Jul 18. pii: S0021-9673(22)00521-0. [Epub ahead of print]1678 463328
      A simple, rapid, and sensitive technique for measuring mirtazapine and its metabolites enantiomers in human fluids, such as urine and serum, was developed by applying ultrasound-enhanced and surfactant-assisted dispersive liquid-liquid microextraction (USA-DLLME) integrated with poly(diallyldimethylammonium chloride) (PDDAC)-mediated stacking in capillary electrophoresis (CE). The parameters that affect extraction and stacking performance, such as the extraction volume, surfactant types, surfactant concentrations, salt additives, extraction time, solution pH, and background electrolytes, were comprehensively studied and optimized to achieve optimal detection performance. Under optimal extraction conditions (injection of 120 µL of C2H2Cl4 into 1 mL of a sample solution containing 0.05 mM Brij-35 at pH 10.0) and separation conditions (0.9% PDDAC, 10 mM phosphate, pH 3.0, and 20 mM dimethyl-β-cyclodextrin), on-line CE stacking of mirtazapine-related chiral drugs was achieved by the two strategies: (i) neutral DM-β-CD sweep low concentrations of DL-NaSSA and (ii) DL-NASSA is stacked by the difference in the viscosity between the PDDAC and sample zone. An approximately 2,800-4000-fold improvement in detection sensitivity was revealed for mirtazapine, N-demethylmirtazapine, and 8-hydroxymirtazapine enantiomers. The linear ranges for the quantification of all analyte enantiomers were 1.2-150 nM, with a coefficient of determination higher than 0.99; the relative standard deviations in the migration time and peak areas for six analytes were less than 1.8% and 5.8%, respectively. The proposed system provided the limits of detection (signal-to-noise ratio of 3) of the six analytes as 0.3-0.5 nM. The recovery of the six separated analytes spiked in urine and serum samples was revealed to be 82.7%-109.5% and 91%-112.8%, respectively. This advanced technique with high sensitivity enhancement factors was successfully employed to analyze mirtazapine and its metabolites enantiomers in urine and serum samples with reliability.
    Keywords:  Body fluids; Capillary electrophoresis; Polymer-mediated e stacking; Psychotropic drugs; Ultrasound an surfactant assisted dispersive liquid liquid microextraction
  27. Front Oncol. 2022 ;12 891018
      Metabolic heterogeneity of cancer contributes significantly to its poor treatment outcomes and prognosis. As a result, studies continue to focus on identifying new biomarkers and metabolic vulnerabilities, both of which depend on the understanding of altered metabolism in cancer. In the recent decades, the rise of mass spectrometry imaging (MSI) enables the in situ detection of large numbers of small molecules in tissues. Therefore, researchers look to using MSI-mediated spatial metabolomics to further study the altered metabolites in cancer patients. In this review, we examined the two most commonly used spatial metabolomics techniques, MALDI-MSI and DESI-MSI, and some recent highlights of their applications in cancer studies. We also described AFADESI-MSI as a recent variation from the DESI-MSI and compare it with the two major techniques. Specifically, we discussed spatial metabolomics results in four types of heterogeneous malignancies, including breast cancer, esophageal cancer, glioblastoma and lung cancer. Multiple studies have effectively classified cancer tissue subtypes using altered metabolites information. In addition, distribution trends of key metabolites such as fatty acids, high-energy phosphate compounds, and antioxidants were identified. Therefore, while the visualization of finer distribution details requires further improvement of MSI techniques, past studies have suggested spatial metabolomics to be a promising direction to study the complexity of cancer pathophysiology.
    Keywords:  DESI-MSI; MALDI-MSI; breast cancer; cancer heterogeneity; esophageal cancer; glioblastoma; lung cancer; spatial metabolomics
  28. Anal Chem. 2022 Aug 01.
      Gas chromatography multiplexed with cyclic ion mobility mass spectrometry is a comprehensive two-dimensional separation technique that can resolve compounds that would otherwise coelute in a single-dimension separation. The cyclic geometry of the ion mobility cell enables ions to travel multiple passes, increasing their drift times to the detector and relative separation. However, the quality of the separation may be obfuscated when "wrap-around" occurs, during which speedier ions catch up with slower ion populations when allowed to travel through more than one pass. Consequently, cyclic ion mobility is incorrectly perceived as a targeted approach that requires preselection of ions prior to separation. The present study demonstrates that "wrap-around" can be mitigated by comparing drift times measured during single- and multipass experiments and extrapolating the number of passes experienced by each ion. This straightforward calculation results in the "unwrapping" of cyclic ion mobility data so that the experiments can be interpreted in a nontargeted way while reaping the benefit of peak capacities that rival those achieved using other comprehensive two-dimensional separations.
  29. J Chromatogr B Analyt Technol Biomed Life Sci. 2022 Jul 30. pii: S1570-0232(22)00306-3. [Epub ahead of print]1208 123402
      Sacubitril/valsartan was indicated for the treatment of heart failure and hypertension in patients with end-stage renal disease on peritoneal dialysis therapy. Herein, a rapid, sensitive and robust method based on ultra-liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (UPLC-MS/MS) was developed and validated for the determination of the concentrations of valsartan, sacubitril and its major metabolite LBQ657 in plasma, urine and peritoneal dialysis fluid. Samples were extracted from various biological fluids using protein precipitation. Extracts were subjected to UPLC-MS/MS with electrospray ionization in positive-ion mode. The developed method was fully validated over a concentration range of 8.00-8000 ng/mL for valsartan, 2.00-2000 ng/mL for sacubitril and 30.0-30,000 ng/mL for LBQ657 in plasma, 2.00-1000 ng/mL for valsartan, 1.00-500 ng/mL for sacubitril and 20.0-10000 ng/mL for LBQ657 in urine, and 0.200-100 ng/mL for valsartan, 0.0400-20.0 ng/mL for sacubitril and 2.00-1000 ng/mL for LBQ657 in peritoneal dialysis fluid. The intra- and inter-day precisions for all analytes in various matrices were less than 12.3%, and the intra- and inter-day accuracies results were all between 88.0% and 109.2%. All analytes were stable for at least 8 h at room temperature (25°C), five freeze-thaw cycles, and 37 days at -40°C and -80°C in plasma, urine and peritoneal dialysis fluid. In conclusion, this developed method is reliable, sensitive and specific for determining the concentrations of valsartan, sacubitril and LBQ657 in plasma, urine and peritoneal dialysis fluid. The assay was available to pilot the pharmacokinetics study of sacubitril/valsartan in patients with end-stage renal disease on peritoneal dialysis, and it could provide evidence that peritoneal dialysis had an effect on the clearance of sacubitril/valsartan.
    Keywords:  Chronic kidney disease; Pharmacokinetics; Sacubitril; UPLC–MS/MS; Validation; Valsartan