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Analytical sciences : the international journal of the Japan Society for Analytical Chemistry

Simultaneous liquid chromatographic measurement of melatonin and related indoles through post-column electrochemical demethylation and fluorescence derivatization.


PMID 16512423

Abstract

In this paper we describe a highly sensitive and selective liquid chromatographic method for the determination of 5-methoxyindoles (5-methoxyindole-3-acetic acid, 5-methoxytryptamine, 5-methoxytryptophol, and melatonin) using a post-column technique involving electrolytic demethylation followed by fluorescence derivatization with benzylamine. We separated these compounds within 30 min by reversed-phase liquid chromatography using acetate buffer (pH 6.5)-acetonitrile-methanol [8:1:1 (v/v); isocratic elution] and then demethylated them, using a commercial coulometric system, to give the corresponding 5-hydroxyindoles. Next, we converted the 5-hydroxyindole products into fluorescent derivatives by their reactions with benzylamine in the presence of potassium hexacyanoferrate(III). We detected the derivatives spectrofluorometrically at 480 nm upon excitation at 345 nm. The detection limits (signal-to-noise ratio = 3) of the 5-methoxyindoles were in the range from 12 to 93 fmol per 20-microL injection.

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M14900
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