Methods for Antiretroviral Drug Quantitation

Methods for antiretroviral drug quantitation include high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) and tandem mass spectrometry (MS)/MS (30-34). The tandem-MS/MS procedures (33,34) developed in our laboratory are simple and allow for the quantitation of 16 HIV drugs simultaneously in less than 5 min. These procedures also afford better sensitivity and specificity than the HPLC methods, which also require lengthy sample preparation steps, relatively large sample volumes, and are far more labor-intensive (30). The tandem-MS/MS method is reliable and has been in routine use at Children's National Medical Center (Washington, DC) since February 2002. Table 3 summarizes a comparison between HPLC and tandem mass spectrometry methods for antiretroviral drug measurement. It is clear that the latter provides for a simultaneous measurement of 16 drugs in a short time frame with minimal sample preparation (33,34), is reliable, more sensitive, and also more specific than HPLC methods (30,31).

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