(1999; 168 pages) [Spanish]
3.3 Use in assays
If the chemical reference substance is to be used in an assay (colorimetry, LC, GC or UV spectrophotometry), the extent of testing is very much greater. Several (a minimum of three) laboratories should collaborate in testing the proposed substance, using a variety of established and validated techniques, including the method used in the pharmacopoeial specification. The relative reactivity or relative absorbance of the impurities present must be checked when a nonspecific assay method is employed, e.g. by colorimetry or UV spectrophotometry. When a selective assay method is employed, it is particularly important to determine the quantity of impurities. In such a case, it is best to examine the proposed reference substance by as many methods as practicable including, where possible, absolute methods. For substances that are acidic or basic a titration with alkali or acid is simple, but other reactions which are known to be stoichiometric may be used. Phase solubility analysis and differential scanning calorimetry may also be employed in certain cases.
The total of the determinations of water content, organic solvents, mineral impurities and organic components should amount to 100%. For most chemical reference substances intended for assays, the content may be expressed "as is". When establishing the chemical reference substance it is therefore essential to determine the content of water and residual solvents for a non-specific assay, and also to determine the content of impurities for a selective assay.