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

Liquid chromatographic mass spectrometric (LC/MS/MS) determination of plasma hydroxocobalamin and cyanocobalamin concentrations after hydroxocobalamin antidote treatment for cyanide poisoning.

PMID 22939270


Cyanide poisoning occurs in individuals after fire smoke inhalation and after oral ingestion of cyanide. Hydroxocobalamin (HOCbl), a hydroxylated form of vitamin B(12), is often used as an antidote to treat cyanide toxicity. It has a high affinity for cyanide and rapidly removes cyanide from tissue by forming cyanocobalamin (CNCbl). Little information is available on the pharmacokinetics of HOCbl and CNCbl largely because of the lack of analytical methods for analyzing HOCbl and CNCbl. In this study, we developed a new liquid chromatographic mass spectrometric (LC/MS/MS) method for the quantitative analysis of plasma HOCbl and CNCbl in the porcine (Sus scrofa) model. The method uses on-column extraction, reversed phase gradient chromatography, and multiple reaction monitoring (MRM) for quantitation. MRM transitions monitored were 664.7→147.3 and 664.7→359.2 for HOCbl and 678.8→147.3, 678.8→359.1 678.8→457.1 for CNCbl. The limit of detection (LOD) and the lower limit of quantitation (LLOQ) were 1.0 and 1.0 μmole/L, respectively, for plasma HOCbl and 0.1 and 0.5 μmole/L for plasma CNCbl. The within-day and between-day CVs were 4.3 and 6.4% for plasma HOCbl at 500.0 μmole/L and 5.5 and 5.7% for CNCbl at 100.0 μmole/L (n=6). The plasma HOCbl and CNCbl calibrations curves were linear from 100.0 to 2000.0 and 50.0 to 500.0 μmole/L, respectively. Based on 6 separate calibration curves the average linear regression coefficient (R(2)) for both HOCbl and CNCbl was 0.992. The LC/M/MS method was found to be accurate and precise and has been validated by determining the plasma HOCbl and CNCbl concentrations in 11 pigs that were treated with HOCbl for cyanide poisoning.