A validated UPLC-MS/MS method for the determination of urinary metabolites of Uvinul® A plus

  • Markus Stoeckelhuber
  • Nikola Pluym
  • Franz Bracher
  • Edgar Leibold
  • Gerhard Scherer
  • Max SchererEmail author
Research Paper


Uvinul® A plus (DHHB) is a synthetic benzophenone derivative mainly used in sunscreens, and also in other skin care products. The compound is authorized by the EU as UV filter and a maximum concentration of 10% in consumer products is permitted. Despite its high production volume and usage in consumer products,to date, no information about the systemic exposure to Uvinul® A plus in humans is available. Therefore, we developed a human biomonitoring method which allows the simultaneous determination of three major metabolites of Uvinul® A plus in human urine samples. Furthermore, three minor metabolites of Uvinul® A plus were identified by ion trap experiments. Urine samples were enzymatically hydrolyzed, extracted via liquid-liquid extraction with ethyl acetate, and analyzed by means of UPLC-MS/MS. The final method was validated according to FDA guidelines and applied to 58 urine samples retrieved from the general German population. The three major and specific metabolites of Uvinul® A plus were found in about 36% of the samples, proving the suitability of the method for future human biomonitoring studies.


Uvinul® A plus Urine UPLC-MS/MS Human biomonitoring (HBM) 


Funding information

The method development for the determination of urinary DHHB metabolites (including the synthesis of part of the reference compounds) was funded by the Chemie Wirtschaftsförderungsgesellschaft, Frankfurt/Main, Germany. The method was developed as part of a 10-year human biomonitoring initiative between the Federal Ministry for Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU) and the Verband der chemischen Industrie e.V. (German Chemical Industry Association (VCI)).

Compliance with ethical standards

Studies with human subjects were approved by the Ethic Committee of the Bayerische Landesärztekammer, Munich, Germany. All subjects gave their informed consent.

Conflict of interest

The authors MS, NP, FB, GS, and MS declare that they have no conflict of interest. EL is employed by a company manufacturing DHHB.

Supplementary material

216_2019_2201_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (329 kb)
ESM 1 (PDF 329 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Markus Stoeckelhuber
    • 1
    • 2
  • Nikola Pluym
    • 1
  • Franz Bracher
    • 2
  • Edgar Leibold
    • 3
  • Gerhard Scherer
    • 1
  • Max Scherer
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Analytisch-Biologisches Forschungslabor GmbHPlaneggGermany
  2. 2.Department of Pharmacy, Center for Drug ResearchLudwig-Maximilians University MunichMunichGermany
  3. 3.BASF SE, Product SafetyLudwigshafenGermany

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