Public Health Resources


Date of this Version



J. Mass Spectrom. (2015), 50, pp. 683–692. DOI 10.1002/jms.3576


U.S. government work.


Tri-ortho-cresyl phosphate (ToCP) is an anti-wear, flame retardant additive used in industrial lubricants, hydraulic fluids and gasoline. The neurotoxic effects of ToCP arise fromthe liver-activatedmetabolite 2-(o-cresyl)-4H-1,3,2-benzodioxaphosphoran-2-one (cresyl saligenin phosphate or CBDP),which inhibits esterase enzymes including butyrylcholinesterase (BChE). Following BChE adduction, CBDP undergoes hydrolysis to formthe aged adduct ortho-cresyl phosphoserine (oCP-BChE), thus providing a biomarker of CBDP exposure. Previous studies have identified ToCP in aircraft cabin and cockpit air, but assessing human exposure has been hampered by the lack of a laboratory assay to confirm exposure. This work presents the development of an immunomagnetic- UHPLC-MS/MSmethod for the quantitation of unadducted BChE and the long-term CBDP biomarker, oCP-BChE, in human serum. Themethod has a reportable range from 2.0ng/ml to 150 ng/ml,which is consistent with the sensitivity ofmethods used to detect organophosphorus nerve agent protein adducts. The assay demonstrated high intraday and interday accuracy (≥85%) and precision (RSD≤ 15%) across the calibration range. The method was developed for future analyses of potential human exposure to CBDP. Analysis of human serum inhibited in vitro with CBDP demonstrated that the oCP-BChE adduct was stable for at least 72h at 4, 22 and 37 °C. Compared to a previously reported assay, this method requires 75% less sample volume, reduces analysis time by a factor of 20 and demonstrates a threefold improvement in sensitivity.