Determination of nicotine and two major metabolites in serum by solid-phase extraction and high-performance liquid chromatography, and high-performance liquid chromatography-particle beam mass spectrometry

J Chromatogr. 1993 Feb 26;612(2):209-13. doi: 10.1016/0378-4347(93)80165-z.


A rapid and selective assay of nicotine, cotinine and trans-3'-hydroxycotinine in human serum, based on high-performance liquid chromatography with UV detection has been developed. The compounds were subjected to solid-phase extraction, using Extrelut 1 cartridges. Recoveries were ca. 95% for nicotine, 90% for cotinine and 50-55% for trans-3'-hydroxycotinine. The limit of quantitation observed with this method was 10 ng/ml for nicotine and 5 ng/ml for each of the metabolites. The compounds were also identified using high-performance liquid chromatography with particle beam mass spectrometry, to confirm their presence in human serum.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid
  • Cotinine / analogs & derivatives
  • Cotinine / blood
  • Humans
  • Mass Spectrometry
  • Nicotine / blood*
  • Reference Standards
  • Smoking / blood
  • Spectrophotometry, Ultraviolet


  • hydroxycotinine
  • Nicotine
  • Cotinine