Quantitation of desmosine and isodesmosine in urine, plasma, and sputum by LC-MS/MS as biomarkers for elastin degradation

Shuren Ma, Gerard M. Turino, Yong Y. Lin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

68 Scopus citations


The aim of this study is to develop a standardized LC-MS/MS method for accurate measurement of desmosine (DES) and isodesmosine (IDS) in all body fluids as biomarkers for in vivo degradation of matrix tissue elastin in man and animals. A reproducible three-step analytical procedure: (1) sample hydrolysis in 6. N HCl, (2) SPE by a CF1 cartridge with addition of acetylated pyridinoline as internal standard (IS), and (3) LC/MSMS analysis by SRM monitoring of transition ions; DES or IDS (m/. z 526-481. +. 397) and IS (m/. z 471-128) was developed. The method achieves accurate measurements of DES/IDS in accessible body fluids (i.e. urine, plasma, and sputum). LOQ of DES/IDS in body fluids is 0.1. ng/ml. The % recoveries and reproducibility from urine, plasma, and sputum samples are above 99 ± 8% (n= 3), 94 ± 9% n= 3) and 87 ± 11% (n= 3), with imprecision 8%, 9% and 10%, respectively. The proposed method was applied to measure DES/IDS in body fluids of patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and healthy controls. Total DES/IDS in sputum and plasma is increased over normal controls along with the free DES/IDS in urine in patients. DES/IDS can be used to study the course of COPD and the response to therapy. This practical and reliable LC-MS/MS method is proposed as a standardized method to measure DES and IDS in body fluids. This method can have wide application for investigating diseases which involve elastic tissue degradation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1893-1898
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Chromatography B: Analytical Technologies in the Biomedical and Life Sciences
Issue number21
StatePublished - 1 Jul 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Biomarker
  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
  • Elastin degradation
  • LC-MS


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