Enhanced UHPLC-MS/MS screening of selective androgen receptor modulators following urine hydrolysis

Enhanced UHPLC-MS/MS screening of selective androgen receptor modulators following urine hydrolysis / Anna Gadaj, Emiliano Ventura, Jim Healy, Francesco Botrè, Saskia S. Sterk, Tom Buckley, Mark H. Mooney. - (MethodsX 7 (2020) 100926 (21 May); p. 1-12)

  • PMID: 32547930
  • PMCID:
  • PMC7286957
  • DOI: 10.1016/j.mex.2020.100926 


Selective androgen receptor modulators (SARMs) represent non-steroidal agents commonly abused in human and animal (i.e. equine, canine) sports, with potential for further misuse as growth promoting agents in livestock-based farming. As a direct response to the real and possible implications of illicit application in both sport as well as food production systems, this study incorporated enzymatic hydrolysis (β-glucuronidase/arylsulfatase) into a previously established protocol while maintaining the minimal volume (200 µL) of urine sample required to detect SARMs encompassing various pharmacophores in urine from a range of species (i.e. equine, bovine, human, canine and rodent). The newly presented semi-quantitative UHPLC-MS/MS-based assay is shown to be fit-for-purpose, being rapid and offering high-throughput, with validation findings fulfilling criteria stipulated within relevant doping and food control legislation.•CCβ values determined at 1 ng mL-1 for majority of analytes.•Deconjugation step included in the method led to significantly increased relative abundance of ostarine in analysed incurred urine samples demonstrating the requirement for hydrolysis to detect a total form of emerging SARMs.•Assay amenable for use within routine testing to ensure fair play in animal and human sports and that animal-derived food is free from contamination with SARM residues.

Original document


21 May 2020
Botrè, Francesco
Buckley, Tom
Gadaj, Anna
Healy, Jim
Mooney, Mark H.
Sterk, Saskia S.
Ventura, Emiliano
Other organisations
Agri-Food and Biosciences Institute (AFBI)
Limerick Institute of Technology (LIM)
Queen's University Belfast (QUB)
Wageningen University & Research (WUR)
Roma, Italia: Laboratorio Antidoping FMSI
Analytical aspects
Mass spectrometry analysis
Testing method development
Doping classes
S1. Anabolic Agents
Selective androgen receptor modulators (SARMs)
Food and/or drinks
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Scientific article
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Date generated
23 September 2020
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