Steroid analysis by ion mobility spectrometry

Alana L. Rister, Eric D. Dodds

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations


Steroids are an important biomolecule class for analysis due to their promise as biomarkers for various diseases and their abuse as performance enhancers in sports. Current analytical methods, including chromatography and nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, fall short of being able to confidently analyze steroids, partly due to the large number of steroid isomers. Ion mobility spectrometry (IMS), a gas-phase ion separator, has shown potential for steroid analysis both in conjunction with liquid chromatography (LC) and as a stand-alone technique. This review will examine the current literature on IMS analysis of steroids. Analysis by LC-IMS will include examination of steroids and steroid glucuronides in human urine and serum samples for enhanced signal-to-noise ratios and higher confidence of identification. The stand-alone IMS analysis will examine the use of derivatization of steroids and formation of multimers to enhance resolution for steroid isomers analysis, where both methods have been shown to greatly increase the separation of steroid isomer species. However, these methods have not been applied to biological mixtures to assess their applicability to medical and forensic applications, which should be a future direction of this field.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number108531
StatePublished - Jan 2020


  • Ion mobility spectrometry
  • Liquid chromatography
  • Steroid analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Endocrinology
  • Pharmacology
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Organic Chemistry


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