3 years ago

A Generic HPLC Method for Absolute Quantification of Oxidation in Monoclonal Antibodies and Fc-Fusion Proteins Using UV and MS Detection

A Generic HPLC Method for Absolute Quantification of Oxidation in Monoclonal Antibodies and Fc-Fusion Proteins Using UV and MS Detection
Johann Holzmann, Therese Wohlschlager, Christof Regl, Christian G. Huber
Oxidation of biopharmaceuticals may affect their bioactivity, serum half-life, and (bio)chemical stability. The Fc domain of IgG monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) contains two methionine residues which are susceptible to oxidation. Here, we present a middle-down approach employing the cysteine protease IdeS under reducing conditions to obtain three mAb subunits of approximately 25 kDa: Fc/2, Fd′, and LC. These subunits were separated by ion-pair reversed-phase high-performance liquid chromatography (IP-RP-HPLC) and detected by UV spectroscopy as well as Orbitrap mass spectrometry (MS), as well as MS upon all-ion fragmentation (AIF-MS). We evaluated the feasibility of three strategies for absolute quantification of oxidation in the Fc region of hydrogen peroxide-stressed Rituximab, using a single, commercially available software platform both for data acquisition and evaluation: UV spectroscopy, full-scan MS, and monitoring of product ions obtained by AIF-MS. UV spectroscopy showed the lowest limits of quantification (LOQ) (0.96 ng μL–1) and featured the lowest relative process standard deviation (Vx0%) of 7.2% compared to MS and AIF-MS with LOQs of 1.24–4.32 ng μL–1 and relative process standard deviations of 9.0–14%, respectively. Our approach is generic in that it allows monitoring and quantification of oxidation in the Fc regions of fully human and humanized IgG1 mAbs as well as of Fc-fusion proteins. This is exemplified by limits of detection of 1.2%, 1.0%, and 1.2% of oxidation in drug products containing the biopharmaceuticals Rituximab, Adalimumab, and Etanercept, respectively. The presented method is an attractive alternative to conventional time-intensive peptide mapping which is prone to artificial oxidation due to extensive sample preparation.

Publisher URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.analchem.7b01755

DOI: 10.1021/acs.analchem.7b01755

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