Simplification of FDLA Pre-Column Derivatization for LC/MS/MS Toward Separation and Detection of d,l-Amino Acids

  • Masaki Kobayashi
  • Yusuke Takano
  • Hiroki Takishima
  • Shintaro Sakaitani
  • Masaru Niitsu
  • Takemitsu Furuchi
Short Communication


Chiral chromatography is a sensitive technique used to separate l- and d-amino acids. Marfey’s reagent (1-fluoro-2,4-dinitrophenyl-5-l-alaninamide, FDAA) has been used as a chiral derivatization reagent to determine amino acid stereochemistry. Replacement of alanylamide in this reagent with leucylamide resulted in the derivative 1-fluoro-2,4-dinitrophenyl-5-l-leucinamide (FDLA), which proved a superior chiral derivatization reagent for the separation of d,l-amino acids due to the improved LC/MS measurement sensitivity. However, FDLA derivatization requires alkaline conditions, achieved with the use of NaHCO3, which necessitates an additional desalting step (e.g., liquid–liquid extraction) before quantitative analysis using LC/MS/MS. To establish a simplified LC/MS/MS measurement method, solid NaHCO3 was replaced with volatile triethylamine (TEA). The 30-min derivatization using FDLA under alkaline conditions with TEA at room temperature allowed for exclusion of the desalting step from the FDLA pre-column derivatization. Furthermore, using TEA, larger peak areas and more effective detection of hydrophilic amino acids could be achieved.


Liquid chromatography–mass spectrometry FDLA d-Amino acid Chiral separation 


Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

All authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical SciencesJosai UniversitySakadoJapan

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