Determination and confirmation of selective estrogen receptor modulators (SERMs), anti-estrogens and aromatase inhibitors in bovine and porcine urine using UHPLC-MS/MS

Meijer, Thijs; Essers, Martien L.; Kaklamanos, Georgios; Sterk, Saskia S.; Ginkel, Leendert A. van


Selective estrogen receptor modulators (SERMs), anti-estrogens and aromatase inhibitors are prohibited in human sports doping. However, they also present a risk of being used illegally in animal husbandry for fattening purposes. A method was developed and validated using UHPLC-MS/MS for the determination and confirmation of SERMs, anti-estrogens and aromatase inhibiters in bovine and porcine urine. This method was used in a survey of more than 200 bovine and porcine urine samples from Dutch farms. In 18 out of 103 porcine urine samples (17%) and two out of 114 bovine samples (2%) formestane, an aromatase inhibitor, was detected. None of the other compounds was detected. From human doping control it is known that formestane can, in some cases, be of natural origin. Analyses of reference samples from untreated bovine and porcine animals demonstrated the presence of formestane in bovine animals, but not yet in porcine animals. Future research will focus on whether the detected formestane in porcine and bovine urine is from endogenous or exogenous origin, using GC-c-IRMS.