Measurement of total plasma cysteamine using high-performance liquid chromatography with electrochemical detection

Anal Biochem. 1988 Feb 1;168(2):374-9. doi: 10.1016/0003-2697(88)90332-6.


Cysteamine is currently used to treat children with the inherited disorder nephropathic cystinosis. A method for the quantitative determination of this aminothiol in human plasma is presented. Whole plasma was reduced with sodium borohydride to convert disulfides to thiols. Cysteamine was then separated by high-performance liquid chromatography and detected electrochemically. The recovery of standard cysteamine added to plasma was 96.6 +/- 1.9%. In a patient with cystinosis, an oral dose of cysteamine was absorbed rapidly, with plasma cysteamine reaching a maximum of 56 microM 1 h after the dose. By 1.8 h the plasma cysteamine concentration had decreased to one-half the maximum value.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Borohydrides
  • Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid / methods
  • Cysteamine / blood*
  • Electrochemistry
  • Humans


  • Borohydrides
  • Cysteamine
  • sodium borohydride