Cotinine determination by immunoassays may be influenced by other nicotine metabolites

Arch Toxicol. 1988;62(5):395-7. doi: 10.1007/BF00293630.


Polyclonal rabbit anticotinine antiserum, which can be used for biomonitoring nicotine uptake by the determination of cotinine in body fluids, was checked by a competitive ELISA for its cross-reactivity with nine nicotine metabolites. The highest percentage of relative cross-reactivity (about 30%) was observed with trans-3'-hydroxycotinine, a metabolite which is known to be excreted in 3-fold higher amounts than cotinine in the urine of human smokers. Therefore, it is possible that cotinine determinations performed by immunochemical methods--especially in urine--may yield overestimated cotinine concentrations.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Buffers
  • Cotinine / analogs & derivatives
  • Cotinine / analysis*
  • Cross Reactions
  • Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay
  • Nicotine / metabolism*
  • Pyrrolidinones / analysis*
  • Rabbits


  • Buffers
  • Pyrrolidinones
  • hydroxycotinine
  • Nicotine
  • Cotinine