Strong test for FUR: Spectral stimulant

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  • Published: Jan 7, 2013
  • Author: David Bradley
  • Channels: UV/Vis Spectroscopy
thumbnail image: Strong test for FUR: Spectral stimulant

FUR test

A new spectroscopic method has been developed for the determination of the drug furosemide used to treat congestive heart failure and other conditions.

A new spectroscopic method has been developed for the determination of the drug furosemide used to treat congestive heart failure and other conditions. The drug is alsosed illegally by some athletes as a stimulant and rapid weight-loss agent.

Yali Liu, Huijuan Wang, Jian Wang and Yuanfang Li of Southwest University, in Chongqing, China, explain how furosemide (4-chloro-N-furfuryl-5-sulfamoyl-anthranillic acid, FUR) is a potent diuretic. It is widely used in the treatment of chronic kidney failure, high blood pressure, congestive heart failure and cirrhosis of the liver. Its effects are correlated directly with administered dose as too are its side-effects.

In long-term use FUR can lead to high levels of uric acid in the blood, hyperuricemia, acute gout, gastric and duodenal ulcers, and even permanent hearing loss. It is also a substance of abuse used as a stimulant by weightlifters and boxers to rapidly reduce their weight pre-competition. Its use is banned by the International Olympic Committee and it is subject to strict monitoring and control. A simple, effective and accurate clinical monitoring system for the drug is therefore needed in both the clinical setting and in the sporting world.

Complex approach

Previously, titration, spectrophotometry, gas chromatography, high-performance liquid chromatography with liquid-liquid extraction and solid-phase extraction and enhanced chemiluminescence have been used in the determination of FUR. The team has turned to the fluorescent Zn(II)-bix complexes, which they point out have drug-carrier abilities. The presence of the complex bound to FUR can, they have now found, boost the fluorescence at 400 nanometres considerably to a degree that is in direct proportion to the concentration of FUR in a given sample. As such, the team has now developed a simple, rapid and sensitive spectrofluorometric method for determining the precise levels of FUR in tablets.

Drug testing

The team has quantified the relative error induced by the presence of a range of amino acids, sugars and biological metal ions in samples. They also exploited the benefits of fluorescence spectroscopy, UV-vis absorption and infrared spectroscopy to home in on a possible mechanism involving the formation of a ternary complex. Success with this zinc-based imidazole derivative as a fluorescent marker for FUR detection highlights the potential for other related compounds to be developed for use as chemical sensors in the fluorescence analysis of other drugs, the team concludes.

Related Links

Luminescence, 2012, online: "A simple and sensitive spectrofluorimetric method for the determination of furosemide using zinc(II)-1,4-bis(imidazol-1-ylmethyl)benzene complexes"

Article by David Bradley

The views represented in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of John Wiley and Sons, Ltd.

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