Clozapine is one of the most promising medications for managing schizophrenia but it is under-utilized because of the challenges of maintaining serum levels in a safe therapeutic range (1-3μM). Timely measurement of serum clozapine levels has been identified as a barrier to the broader use of clozapine, which is however challenging due to the complexity of serum samples. We demonstrate a robust and reusable electrochemical sensor with graphene-chitosan composite for rapidly measuring serum levels of clozapine. Our electrochemical measurements in clinical serum from clozapine-treated and clozapine-untreated schizophrenia groups are well correlated to centralized laboratory analysis for the readily detected uric acid and for the clozapine which is present at 100-fold lower concentration. The benefits of our electrochemical measurement approach for serum clozapine monitoring are: (i) rapid measurement (≈20min) without serum pretreatment; (ii) appropriate selectivity and sensitivity (limit of detection 0.7μM); (iii) reusability of an electrode over several weeks; and (iv) rapid reliability testing to detect common error-causing problems. This simple and rapid electrochemical approach for serum clozapine measurements should provide clinicians with the timely point-of-care information required to adjust dosages and personalize the management of schizophrenia.
Keywords: Clozapine; Electrochemical sensor; Electrodeposition; Graphene; Serum; Therapeutic drug monitoring.
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