UHPLC-MS/MS Quantification of Buprenorphine, Norbuprenorphine, Methadone, and Glucuronide Conjugates in Umbilical Cord Plasma

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Opioid use during pregnancy can result in the newborn being physically dependent on the substance, thus experiencing drug withdrawal, termed neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS). Buprenorphine and methadone are two drugs used to treat opioid withdrawal and are approved for use in pregnancy. Quantification of these compounds in umbilical cord plasma would help assess in utero exposure of neonates in cases of buprenorphine or methadone use during pregnancy. An LC-MS/MS method using solid-phase extraction sample preparation was developed and validated for the simultaneous quantification of methadone, buprenorphine, norbuprenorphine, and glucuronide metabolites in umbilical cord plasma. The average accuracy (percentage error) and precision (relative standard deviation) were