OBJECTIVE

In the hospital settings, buprenorphine is used for the treatment of patients with neonatal abstinence syndrome. It is extemporaneously compounded and stored in oral plastic syringes. However, limited information exists about the stability of buprenorphine and its compounded formulations when stored under specific conditions. Hence, we developed a stability-indicating high-performance liquid chromatography–mass spectrometry (LC-MS) method to analyze the stability of buprenorphine over time.

METHODS

A stability-indicating LC-MS method was developed to map the potential degradation peaks of buprenorphine when exposed to acidic, basic, and oxidative conditions. This method was used to study the stability of compounded buprenorphine oral syringes stored under refrigeration (2°C–8°C) and room temperature (25°C ± 2°C with 60% relative humidity). Syringes from each storage condition were assessed for stability using pH meter and stability-indicating LC-MS assay for 30 days.

RESULTS

Buprenorphine gets completely degraded in the presence of acid at the end of 1 hour of exposure. Various degradation peaks were identified using LC-MS assay for buprenorphine under acidic, basic, and peroxide conditions. Stability study of oral buprenorphine syringes showed no precipitation, cloudiness, or color change during this study at all storage conditions. The LC-MS assay revealed that buprenorphine oral syringes retained greater than 90% of the initial concentrations for 30 days.

CONCLUSIONS

Highly sensitive stability-indicating LC-MS method was developed for studying the stability of extemporaneously compounded buprenorphine oral syringes. This study demonstrates that buprenorphine extemporaneous formulation prepared according to the manufacturers' recommendations is stable under refrigerated or room temperature conditions for 30 days in oral plastic syringes.

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