The use of inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry as a detector in drug metabolism studies

Bente Gammelgaard, Helle Ruesz Hansen, Stefan Sturup, Charlotte Moller

Research output: Contribution to journalLiterature reviewpeer-review

51 Citations (Scopus)


Background: The inherent properties of element selectivity combined with high sensitivity and structure independent response, make inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) an interesting alternative detection technique in drug metabolism studies. Objective: The application of online separation with ICP-MS detection in drug metabolism studies is reviewed with focus on the merits and demerits of this detection technique. The prerequisite for inclusion in this review is that the study involves a separation technique hyphenated online to the ICP-MS detection. Resultlconclusion: ICP-MS detection is found to be advantageous for analysis of all drug substances detectable by ICP-MS compared to radiochemical detection. Detectable drugs are limited to halogen-, sulfur-, metal- and metalloid-containing compounds. The drawback of interference from enclogenous compounds on quantitative mass balance estimations of non-metal drugs is addressed. The potential of determining the stoichiometry in metallo-drug biomolecule interactions is pointed out by presenting examples of simultaneous monitoring of metals in metallo-drugs and intrinsic ICP-MS detectable elements in biomolecules. it is concluded that ICP-MS detection is an indispensable technique in drug metabolism studies of metallo-drugs, although the applicability for traditional drugs is limited.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1187-1207
Number of pages21
JournalExpert Opinion on Drug Metabolism and Toxicology
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2008


  • drug metabolism
  • gold
  • halogens
  • ICP-MS
  • metallo-drugs
  • platinum
  • ruthenium
  • sulfur
  • performance liquid-chromatography
  • earthworm eisenia-veneta
  • human serum-proteins
  • red-blood-cells
  • capillary-electrophoresis
  • rat urine
  • F-19-NMR spectroscopy
  • bradykinin metabolism
  • degradation-products


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