Journal of chromatography. B, Analytical technologies in the biomedical and life sciences

Development and validation of a rapid and sensitive assay for simultaneous quantification of midazolam, 1'-hydroxymidazolam, and 4-hydroxymidazolam by liquid chromatography coupled to tandem mass-spectrometry.

PMID 20434409


Midazolam is an ultra short acting benzodiazepine derivative and a specific probe for phenotyping cytochrome P450 (P450) 3A4/5 activity. A rapid, sensitive, and selective LC-MS/MS method was developed for simultaneous quantitation of midazolam and its metabolites (1'-hydroxymidazolam and 4-hydroxymidazolam). Deuterated (D5) analog of midazolam was utilized as an internal standard. Sample preparation either from human plasma (100 microL) or liver microsomal incubations involved a simple protein precipitation using acetonitrile (900 microL) with an average recovery of >90% for all compounds. The chromatographic separation was achieved using Zorbax-SB Phenyl, Rapid Resolution HT (2.1 mm x 100 mm, 3.5 microm) and a gradient elution with 10 mM ammonium acetate in 10% methanol (A) and acetonitrile (B). The flow rate was 0.25 mL/min and total run time was 5.5 min. Calibration curves were linear over the concentration range of 0.100-250 ng/mL. The lower limit of quantitation (LLOQ) was 0.1 ng/mL for all three analytes. The accuracy and precision, estimated at LLOQ and three concentration levels of quality control samples in six replicates, were within 85-115%. In conclusion, a robust, simple and highly sensitive analytical method was developed and validated for the analysis of midazolam and its metabolites. This method is suitable for characterizing the P450 3A4/5 activity in vitro or in human pharmacokinetic studies allowing administration of smaller doses of midazolam.