A high-performance liquid chromatographic (HPLC) method with ultraviolet detection at 278 nm is presented for the determination of 5,10-dideaza-5,6,7,8-tetrahydrofolic acid in plasma. Sample pretreatment was achieved by using cation-exchange solid-phase extraction columns with methotrexate as internal standard. Chromatographic separation was based on ion-pair HPLC with 1-octanesulphonic acid as the ion-pairing compound. The detection limit was 10 ng/ml using an 500-microliters sample volume. The assay was linear from the detection limit up to 5000 ng/ml with good reproducibility. The applicability of the assay was demonstrated in a study in the rat.