Fingerprint analysis of the fruits ofCnidium monnieriextract by high-performance liquid chromatography–diode array detection–electrospray ionization tandem mass spectrometry

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A method incorporating high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) with electrospray ionization (ESI) and tandem mass spectrometry (MS), with parallel analysis by HPLC with UV detection using a diode-array detector (DAD) was developed for the qualitative characterization of coumarin and chromone constituents in the fruits of Cnidium monnieri. The chromatographic separations were performed on a Diamonsil™ C18 column (4.6 mm × 200 mm, 5 μm) with water with 50 mM ammonium acetate and 2% acetic acid (A) and acetonitrile (B) as the mobile phase. According to the characteristic UV spectra, the information of molecular weight and structure provided by ESI–MS/MS, 13 coumarin and 7 chromone components were detected and identified. This method is rapid and reliable for identification of the constituents in the complex herbal system, and the fragmentation patterns proposed could be extended to the similar compounds.

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