Background: Serotonin, an endogenous biogenic amine found in enterochromaffin cells of the gastrointestinal tract, is produced in excess by carcinoid tumors. The primary urinary metabolite of serotonin, 5-hydroxyindoleacetic acid (5-HIAA), is used in the diagnosis and management of carcinoid disease. This study describes the development and validation of a dilute-and-shoot LC-MS/MS method for the measurement of 5-HIAA in urine.
Methods: Samples were prepared by dilution in a 96-well format using an automated liquid handler. Chromatographic isolation of the analyte was achieved using a reversed-phase analytical column. A triple quadrupole mass spectrometer with electrospray ionization in positive mode was used for detection and quantification. Data were acquired by multiple reaction monitoring. Two transitions, quantifier (192.1/146.1) and qualifier (192.1/118.1), were monitored for the analyte and its stable isotope–labeled internal standard [5-hydroxyindole-4,6,7-d3-3-acetic-2,2-d2 acid (5-HIAA-d5)]. Chromatography was designed to elute the analyte outside of major suppression zones.
Results: Injection-to-injection time was 4 min. The method was validated for linearity, limit of quantification, accuracy, and imprecision. The analytical measurement range was 0.5–100 mg/L. Coefficients of variation for within-run, between-day, and total imprecision ranged from 0.8% to 5.4%. The method produced accurate 5-HIAA concentrations and correlated well (R = 0.9876) with a comparison HPLC method. Matrix effects were evaluated by post-column infusion of urine samples. An analytical specificity study of endogenous compounds, vitamins, medications, and drugs showed minimal interference.
Conclusions: A simple, inexpensive LC-MS/MS method was developed for measurement of 5-HIAA in urine. Results from the assay can be used clinically to assess carcinoid tumors.
Authors' Disclosures or Potential Conflicts of Interest: No authors declared any potential conflicts of interest.
Role of Sponsor: No sponsor was declared.
- Received September 2, 2016.
- Accepted October 17, 2016.
- © 2016 American Association for Clinical Chemistry