Quantification of Idelalisib in Human Plasma by Ultra-Performance Liquid Chromatography Coupled to Mass Spectrometry in Negative Ionization Mode

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Idelalisib is the first orally active selective phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase delta inhibitor approved by Food and Drug Administration and European Medicines Agency in 2014 for the treatment of several types of blood cancer. Idelalisib is widely used as a monotherapy or in combination with rituximab, bendamustine, or ofatumumab with a significant efficacy. However, idelalisib has shown increased risk of infection and a higher frequency of serious adverse events. It may be useful to determine idelalisib concentration in human plasma to adjust dose and to manage adverse effects in clinical practice.


After a single-step protein precipitation of plasma samples, the chromatographic separation was performed using an ultra-high performance liquid chromatography system coupled with mass tandem spectrometry in a negative ionization mode using isotope-labeled internal standard. This method was validated by studies of its linearity, accuracy, imprecision, limit of quantification, recovery, matrix effect, selectivity, and stability.


The quantification method was linear from 10 to 2500 ng/mL with a 5 ng/mL lower limit of quantification that encompasses the clinical range of drug concentration. The intraday and interday imprecisions were below 8.1% and 11.4%, respectively. The recoveries and matrix effect of idelalisib were 85.6% ± 1.2% and 95.7% ± 3.0%, respectively, which are consistent, precise, and reproducible (coefficient of variation % < 15%). Peak plasma concentration and trough plasma concentration ranges of idelalisib reached 1591–1937 ng/mL and 256.3–303.3 ng/mL, respectively, in 3 follicular lymphoma patients treated with idelalisib 150 mg twice a day.


A robust and sensitive liquid chromatography–tandem mass spectrometry method was developed and validated to quantify idelalisib concentration in human plasma. This method was effectively applied to 3 follicular lymphoma patients.

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