This paper reviews the recent advances and the key strategies in capillary electrophoresis (CE) with electrochemical detection (ECD) for separating and detecting a variety of bioactive constituents in traditional Chinese medicines (TCMs). The subjects covered include the separation modes for the CE analysis of the constituents in TCMs, the CE-ECD system, the sample preparations of TCMs, the ECD of TCMs, the applications of CE-ECD in the determination of various bioactive constituents in Chinese medicinal materials and their preparations, the identification and differentiation of TCMs by CE-ECD, and future prospects. It is expected that CE-ECD will become a powerful tool in the herbal medicinal fields and will lead to the creation of truly routine devices for TCM analysis.
Keywords: Traditional Chinese medicine, pharmaceutical analysis, capillary electrophoresis, electrochemical detection, amperometry, electrode, bioactive constituent, differentiation
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