We aim to determine the chemical constituents of Yinchen extract and Yinchen herbs using high-performance liquid chromatography coupled with diode array detection and high-resolution mass spectrometry. The method was developed to analyze of eight organic acid components of Yinchen extract (including neochlorogenic acid, chlorogenic acid, cryptochlorogenic acid, caffeic acid, 1,3-dicaffeoylquinic acid, 3,4-dicaffeoylquinic acid, 3,5-dicaffeoylquinic acid and 4,5-dicaffeoylquinic acid). The separation was conducted using an Agilent TC-C18 column with acetonitrile – 0.2% formic acid solution as the mobile phases under gradient elution. The analytical method was fully validated in terms of linearity, sensitivity, precision, repeatability as well as recovery, and subsequently the method was performed for the quantitative assessment of Yinchen extracts and Yinchen herbs. In addition, the changes of selected markers were studied when Yinchen herbs decocting in water and isomerization occurred between the chlorogenic acids. The proposed method enables both qualitative and quantitative analyses and could be developed as a new tool for the quality evaluation of Yinchen extract and Yinchen herbs. The changes of selected markers in water decoction process could give us some novel idea when studying the link between substances and drug efficacy. © 2017

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