Hydroxylated polybrominated diphenyl ethers (OH-PBDEs) are formed from the oxidative metabolism of polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) in humans, rats and mice, but their quantitation in human blood and other matrices with liquid chromatography-mass spectrometric techniques has been a challenge. In this study, a novel analytical method was developed and validated using only 250 μL of human serum for the quantitation of twelve OH-PBDEs, fully chromatographically separated in a 15 min analytical run. This method includes two novel approaches: an enzymatic hydrolysis procedure and a chromatographic separation using a mixed mode chromatography column. The enzymatic hydrolysis (EH) was found critical for 4'-OH-BDE17, which was not detectable without it. For the sample clean up, a solid phase extraction protocol was developed and validated for the extraction of the 12 congeners from human serum. In addition, for the first time baseline resolution of two components was achieved that correspond to a single peak previously identified as 6'-OH-BDE99. The method was validated for linearity, accuracy, precision, matrix effects, limit of quantification, limit of detection, sample stability and overall efficiency. Recoveries (absolute and relative) ranged from 66 to 130% with relative standard deviations <21% for all analytes. Limit of detection and quantitation ranged from 4 to 90 pg mL(-1) and 6-120 pg mL(-1), respectively, with no carry over effects. This method was applied in ten commercially available human serum samples from the general US population. The mean values of the congeners detected in all samples are 4'-OH-BDE17 (34.2 pg mL(-1)), 4-OH-BDE42 (33.9 pg mL(-1)), 5-OH-BDE47 (17.5 pg mL(-1)) and 4'-OH-BDE49 (12.4 pg mL(-1)).