Kava is regaining its popularity with detailed characterizations warranted. We developed an ultraperformance liquid chromatography high-resolution tandem mass spectrometry (UPLC-MS/MS) method for major kavalactones (kavain, dihydrokavain, methysticin, dihydromethysticin and desmethoxyyangonin) with excellent selectivity and specificity. The method has been validated for different matrices following the Food and Drug Administration guidance of analytical procedures and methods validation. The scope of this method has been demonstrated by quantifying these kavalactones in two kava products, characterizing their tissue distribution and pharmacokinetics in mice, and detecting their presence in human urines and plasmas upon kava intake. As expected, the abundances of these kavalactones differed significantly in kava products. All of them exhibited a large volume of distribution with extensive tissue affinity and adequate mean residence time (MRT) in mice. This method also successfully quantified these kavalactones in human body fluids upon kava consumption at the recommended human dose. This UPLC-MS/MS method therefore can be used to characterize kava products and its pharmacokinetics in animals and in humans.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
National Institute of Health R01CA193278 (CX), Masonic Cancer Center University of Minnesota (NF and CX), the Start-up fund from University of Florida College of Pharmacy and Department of Medicinal Chemistry (JPM and CX), and the COP PROSPER Award (CX). The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.