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

Fully validated LC-MS/MS method for quantification of homocysteine concentrations in samples of human serum: a new approach.

PMID 25306114


Reported homocysteine (HCY) concentrations in human serum show poor concordance amongst laboratories due to endogenous HCY in the matrices used for assay calibrators and QCs. Hence, we have developed a fully validated LC-MS/MS method for measurement of HCY concentrations in human serum samples that addresses this issue by minimising matrix effects. We used small volumes (20μL) of 2% Bovine Serum Albumin (BSA) as surrogate matrix for making calibrators and QCs with concentrations adjusted for the endogenous HCY concentration in the surrogate matrix using the method of standard additions. To aliquots (20μL) of human serum samples, calibrators or QCs, were added HCY-d4 (internal standard) and tris-(2-carboxyethyl) phosphine hydrochloride (TCEP) as reducing agent. After protein precipitation, diluted supernatants were injected into the LC-MS/MS. Calibration curves were linear; QCs were accurate (5.6% deviation from nominal), precise (CV%≤9.6%), stable for four freeze-thaw cycles, and when stored at room temperature for 5h or at -80°C (27 days). Recoveries from QCs in surrogate matrix or pooled human serum were 91.9 and 95.9%, respectively. There was no matrix effect using 6 different individual serum samples including one that was haemolysed. Our LC-MS/MS method has satisfied all of the validation criteria of the 2012 EMA guideline.