Development and validation of a bioanalytical method for the quantification of the CDK4/6 inhibitors abemaciclib, palbociclib, and ribociclib in human and mouse matrices using liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry.


Alejandra Martínez-Chávez


Department of Pharmacy & Pharmacology, The Netherlands Cancer Institute, Plesmanlaan 121, 1066 CX, Amsterdam, The Netherlands. [Email]


A novel method was developed and validated for the quantification of the three approved CDK4/6 inhibitors (abemaciclib, palbociclib, and ribociclib) in both human and mouse plasma and mouse tissue homogenates (liver, kidney, spleen, brain, and small intestine) using liquid chromatography coupled to tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). For all matrices, pretreatment was performed using 50 μL of sample by protein precipitation with acetonitrile, followed by dilution of the supernatant. Chromatographic separation of the analytes was done on a C18 column using gradient elution. A full validation was performed for human plasma, while a partial validation was executed for mouse plasma and mouse tissue homogenates. The method was linear in the calibration range from 2 to 200 ng/mL, with a correlation coefficient (r) ≥0.996 for each analyte. For both human and mouse plasma, the accuracy and precision were within ±15% and ≤15%, respectively, for all concentrations, except for the lower limit of quantification, where they were within ±20% and ≤20%, respectively. A fit-for-purpose strategy was followed for tissue homogenates, and the accuracy and precision were within ±20% and ≤20%, respectively, for all concentrations. Stability of all analytes in all matrices at different processing and storage conditions was tested; ribociclib and palbociclib were unstable in most tissue homogenates and conditions were modified to increase the stability. The method was successfully applied for the analysis of mouse samples from preclinical studies. A new ribociclib metabolite was detected in mouse plasma samples with the same m/z transition as the parent drug.


Abemaciclib,LC-MS/MS,Palbociclib,Plasma,Ribociclib,Tissue homogenates,