LC–MS/MS method for the simultaneous determination of Lys-MCC-DM1, MCC-DM1 and DM1 as potential intracellular catabolites of the antibody-drug conjugate trastuzumab emtansine (T-DM1)

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Lysine-MCC-DM1, MCC-DM1 and DM1 are potential catabolites of trastuzumab emtansine (T-DM1). A convenient liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC–MS/MS) method was developed and validated to detect these catabolites simultaneously in in vitro investigations for the first time. Protein precipitation was utilized to prepare the samples. Chromatographic separation was achieved on a Phenomenex Kinetex C18 column (100 × 2.1 mm, 2.6 μm) with mobile-phase gradient elution. The calibration curves of each analyte ranging from 1 to 100 nM showed good linearity (r2 > 0.995). The method was validated successfully and applied to the intracellular catabolism and regulation of T-DM1.HighlightsLC–MS/MS method for simultaneous determination of Lys-MCC-DM1, MCC-DM1 and DM1 was developed.Immediate protein precipitation was used instead of DM1 derivatization for sample preparation.The method was validated and applied to intracellular catabolism investigations of T-DM1.

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