Skip to main page content
Access keys NCBI Homepage MyNCBI Homepage Main Content Main Navigation
. 2016 Dec 13;75:7.6.1-7.6.12.
doi: 10.1002/cpph.16.

Stability of Drugs, Drug Candidates, and Metabolites in Blood and Plasma

Free PMC article

Stability of Drugs, Drug Candidates, and Metabolites in Blood and Plasma

Gregory A Reed. Curr Protoc Pharmacol. .
Free PMC article


Determination of drug or drug metabolite concentrations in biological samples, particularly in serum or plasma, is fundamental to describing the relationships between administered dose, route of administration, and time after dose for achieving the optimal clinical response. While a well-characterized, accurate analytical method is needed to define these parameters, it must also be established that the analyte concentration in the sample at the time of analysis is identical to the concentration at sample acquisition. This is necessitated by the fact that drugs and their metabolites are susceptible to degradation in samples due to metabolism or to physical and chemical processes, resulting in a lower measured concentration than was in the original sample. Careful examination of analyte stability during processing and storage and, if necessary, adjustment of procedures and conditions to maximize stability, are a critical component of method validation to ensure the accuracy of the data. The protocols provided in this unit address the stability of the analytes in whole blood and blood-derived samples prior to sample preparation for analysis. Issues addressed include sample acquisition, processing of whole blood, and storage of blood-derived samples. © 2016 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

Keywords: bioanalytical method validation; drug stability; plasma stability.


Figure 1
Figure 1. Requisite Steps Leading to Bioanalysis: Acquisition, Storage, Processing, and Analysis of Blood-derived Samples
The stages from acquiring a whole blood sample through the final processing of analytical data are depicted. Relevant to the topic of analyte stability, each stage has both a period of time and a set of sample and environmental conditions associated with it. Careful assessment of the effects of those times and conditions on the integrity of the analytes (i.e. drugs and metabolites) is necessary to minimize degradation or other loss and the resulting dissociation between the analytical result and the actual analyte concentration at the time of sample acquisition. The protocols in this chapter apply to those steps within the box on the figure, but also provide a model for the design of stability assessment protocols for those steps outside of the box.

Similar articles

See all similar articles

Cited by 1 article

Publication types

MeSH terms