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Principles of Bioanalytical Method Validation

Principles of Bioanalytical Method Validation and Establishment

· The fundamental parameters to ensure the acceptability of the performance of a bioanalytical method validation are accuracy, precision, selectivity, sensitivity, reproducibility, and stability.

· A specific, detailed description of the bioanalytical method should be written. This can be in the form of a protocol, study plan, report, and/or SOP.

· Each step in the method should be investigated to determine the extent to which environmental, matrix, material, or procedural variables can affect the estimation of analyte in the matrix from the time of collection of the material up to and including the time of analysis.

· It may be important to consider the variability of the matrix due to the physiological nature of the sample. In the case of LC-MS-MS-based procedures, appropriate steps should be taken to ensure the lack of matrix effects throughout the application of the method, especially if the nature of the matrix changes from the matrix used during method validation.

· A bioanalytical method should be validated for the intended use or application. All experiments used to make claims or draw conclusions about the validity of the method should be presented in a report (method validation report).

· Whenever possible, the same biological matrix as the matrix in the intended samples should be used for validation purposes. (For tissues of limited availability, such as bone marrow, physiologically appropriate proxy matrices can be substituted.)

· The stability of the analyte (drug and/or metabolite) in the matrix during the collection process and the sample storage period should be assessed, preferably prior to sample analysis.

· For compounds with potentially labile metabolites, the stability of analyte in matrix from dosed subjects (or species) should be confirmed.

· The accuracy, precision, reproducibility, response function, and selectivity of the method for endogenous substances, metabolites, and known degradation products should be established for the biological matrix. For selectivity, there should be evidence that the substance being quantified is the intended analyte.

· The concentration range over which the analyte will be determined should be defined in the bioanalytical method, based on evaluation of actual standard samples over the range, including their statistical variation. This defines the standard curve.

· A sufficient number of standards should be used to adequately define the relationship between concentration and response. The relationship between response and concentration should be demonstrated to be continuous and reproducible. The number of standards used should be a function of the dynamic range and nature of the concentration-response relationship. In many cases, six to eight concentrations (excluding blank values) can define the standard curve. More standard concentrations may be recommended for nonlinear than for linear relationships.

· The ability to dilute samples originally above the upper limit of the standard curve should be demonstrated by accuracy and precision parameters in the validation.

· In consideration of high throughput analyses, including but not limited to multiplexing, multicolumn, and parallel systems, sufficient QC samples should be used to ensure control of the assay. The number of QC samples to ensure proper control of the assay should be determined based on the run size. The placement of QC samples should be judiciously considered in the run.

· For a bioanalytical method to be considered valid, specific acceptance criteria should be set in advance and achieved for accuracy and precision for the validation of QC samples over the range of the standards.