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Improved quality assessment of proprietary Chinese medicines based on multi-chemical class fingerprinting

Chen, Dan, Zhao, Sandy Shuo, Leung, Kelvin Sze-Yin
Journal of separation science 2009 v.32 no.17 pp. 2892-2902
guidelines, high performance liquid chromatography, ingredients, medicine, phosphoric acid, quality control, wavelengths
Our present study constitutes the first successful attempt to employ eight distinctive chemical groups of compounds for the quality evaluation of a complex traditional Chinese herbal medicine (TCHM) material: BaZhen YiMu (BZYM). Due to the complexity of its matrix, which is composed of nine different herbal ingredients, five representative chemical groups encompassing representative bioactive markers were initially chosen as targets for the quality assessment of this preparation. Furthermore, with the aid of LC-ESI-MS, three additional chemical groups were characterized. In summary, a total of nineteen markers belonging to eight different chemical groups were selectively displayed in the chromatographic fingerprint of BZYM preparation. With this fingerprint, the overall quality of any BZYM preparation can be comprehensively authenticated. The chromatographic separation was performed on an HP Cā‚ā‚ˆ AQ column with a gradient elution of ACN and aqueous solution containing 0.1% phosphoric acid at the optimal detection wavelength of 230 nm. The established method was rigorously validated with respect to the ICH guidelines and represents the most extensive and facile HPLC quality control technique for this formulation. Compared with the conventional method of using a single or only a few markers of the same chemical group, this technique provides a new dimension for TCHM quality control.