Isocratic reversed-phase liquid chromatography (LC) method was developed using acetonitrile and water for the determination of diospyrin, a pharmacologically important bisnaphthoquinonoid plant-product. The method was validated for precision, accuracy and reproducibility, and was found to be linear over the concentration range of 1-1000μg/ml; the limits of detection and quantitation were 8 and 20ng, respectively. The technique was used to determine the amount of diospyrin in plant extracts from four climatic regions in India. It was also applied for differentiation and separation of 27 naphthyl compounds. While a composition of 50:50 was preferable for dimeric compounds, the composition 40:60 was a better choice for the monomers. Also, the isomeric α- and β-naphthols and their dimers could be distinguished by conversion into the respective methyl ethers. © 2003 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.