Monolithic molecularly imprinted solid-phase extraction for the selective determination of trace cytokinins in plant samples with liquid chromatography-electrospray tandem mass spectrometry.Anal Bioanal Chem. 2012 Aug; 404(2):489-501.AB
Cytokinins (CTKs) are a class of growth-regulating hormones involved in various physiological and developmental processes. More novel analytical methods for the accurate identification and quantitative determination of trace CTKs in plants have been desired to better elucidate the roles of CTKs. In this work, a novel method based on monolithic molecularly imprinted solid-phase extraction followed by liquid chromatography-electrospray tandem mass spectrometry (mMI-SPE-LC-MS/MS) was developed for accurate determination of four CTKs in plant samples. The molecularly imprinted polymer monolith was prepared by using kinetin as the template in syringes and exhibited specific recognition ability for the four CTKs in comparison with that of non-imprinted polymer monolith. Several factors affecting the extraction performance of mMI-SPE, including the pH of loading sample solution, the nature and volume of elution solvent, the flow rate of sample loading, and sample volume, were investigated, respectively. Under the optimized conditions, the proposed mMI-SPE-LC-MS/MS method was successfully applied in the selective extraction and determination of four CTKs in plant tissues, and it offers detection limits (S/N = 3) of 104, 113, 130, and 89 pg/mL and mean recoveries of 85.9%, 79.3%, 73.5%, and 70.1% for kinetin, kinetin glucoside, trans-zeatin, and meta-topolin (mT), respectively, with the corresponding RSDs less than 15%.