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Chloroform-based liquid-liquid extraction and LC–MS/MS quantification of endocannabinoids, cortisol and progesterone in human hair

Ney, LJ, Felmingham, KL, Bruno, R ORCID: 0000-0001-6673-833X, Matthews, A ORCID: 0000-0003-2961-9125 and Nichols, DS ORCID: 0000-0002-8066-3132 2021 , 'Chloroform-based liquid-liquid extraction and LC–MS/MS quantification of endocannabinoids, cortisol and progesterone in human hair' , Journal of Pharmaceutical and Biomedical Analysis, vol. 201 , doi: 10.1016/j.jpba.2021.114103.

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Understanding the role of endogenous cannabinoids (endocannabinoids) in disease is of increasing importance. However, tools to investigate endocannabinoid levels in humans are limited. In the current study, we report a simplified sample preparation method for quantifying endocannabinoids and steroid hormones in hair using liquid-liquid extraction combined with ultra performance liquid chromatography coupled to tandem mass spectrometry. The fully validated method is at least R2 = 0.99 linear between 5 and 1,000 pg/mg for each analyte and the detection limits are at or below 0.50 pg/mg for cortisol, progesterone, oleoylethanolamide, and arachidonoyl ethanolamide, and 2.65 pg/mg for 2-arachidonoyl glycerol. Sequential extraction of hair samples revealed that multiple extractions may be required for quantitative recovery of steroids. However endogenous cannabinoids were efficiently recovered using a single sample extraction. The method was applied to a psychosocial stress study where participants provided samples of both hair and saliva. Endogenous hair arachidonoyl ethanolamide levels were negatively associated with resting, but not stressed, salivary cortisol levels in healthy participants. This simplified method enables the detailed study of hormonal and endocannabinoids in human hair with high sensitivity.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Ney, LJ and Felmingham, KL and Bruno, R and Matthews, A and Nichols, DS
Keywords: endocannabinoids, hair, mass spectrometry, liquid chromatography
Journal or Publication Title: Journal of Pharmaceutical and Biomedical Analysis
Publisher: Pergamon-Elsevier Science Ltd
ISSN: 0731-7085
DOI / ID Number: 10.1016/j.jpba.2021.114103
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© 2021 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

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