Background: It is still uncertain whether the accumulation of the bile acids (BAs) in hepatocytes
beyond the normal stand after taking medicine which can cause hepatic injury or under the pathological
state. Because it is lack of valid and simple analytical methods for the quantification of individual
BAs and their taurine and glycine conjugates in the hepatocytes. It is necessary to develop methods
for BAs quantification in hepatocytes to study their function in detail.
Methods: A simple and sensitive liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS)
method has been developed and validated for the simultaneous determination of 6 major BAs, their
glycine, and taurine conjugates in rat hepatocytes, liver, bile, urine, and plasma.
Results: This method is valid and sensitive with a limit of quantification 5 ng/mL, a large dynamic
range (from 4.30 ng/mL to 200000 ng/mL for various analytes). The total run time was 21 min. Detailed
BA profiles were obtained from rat hepatocytes, liver, plasma, bile, and urine using this method. The
result indicated that total BA concentration in rat hepatocytes was 10892.9 ng/mg. The taurine conjugates
BAs constitute 56.2% of the total BAs, unconjugated BAs possess 34.3%, and less than7.5% are
Conclusion: A sensitive and a simple LC-MS/MS method was described for the simultaneous quantification
of the major BAs, as well as their glycine and taurine conjugates in rat hepatocytes, liver, bile,
plasma, and urine.