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In LC-MS/ MS bio-analysis matrix effects influencing the ionization process are a
major concern with respect to the quality of the results obtained. Matrix effects
and selectivity issues have long been associated with bioanalytical techniques. A
number of approaches have been investigated to improve the reproducibility and
robustness of LC-MS/ MS methods that are subjected to matrix effect. In general such
matrix effects are directly related to an insufficient sample clean-up of the biofluids.
Phospholipids are known to cause matrix ionization effects during the analysis of
biological samples (i.e. blood, plasma, urine etc.) in LC-MS/ MS. However the high
incidence of matrix effects in liquid chromatographic tandem mass spectrometric
(LC-MS/ MS) methods help to a greater understanding of the factors which
contribute to these effects. There are qualitative and quantitative ways to determine
matrix effects. Matrix effect is mainly determined in terms of ion suppression or
enhancement. Post column infusion technique is very popular for qualitative
analysis of matrix effects. Whereas, for quantitative determination of matrix effects
more than one techniques are available, among them determination of matrix factor
and calculating the precession and accuracy of quality control samples are widely
used. Among many factors, some of the causes of matrix effects are presence of
endogenous compounds i.e. different phospholipids, inefficient chromatographic
conditions, ionization polarity, ionization source design, ionization technique i.e.
ESI/ APCI, presence of exogenous materials, presence of anticoagulants etc plays
an important role. So to remove or minimize the matrix effects the above mentioned
factors should be optimized.
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