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Forensic Toxicology

Milena Majchrzak, Rafał Celiński, Teresa Kowalska, Mieczysław Sajewicz
Purpose: Similar to synthetic cannabinoids, synthetic cathinone derivatives are the most popular compounds among novel psychoactive substances. Along with a growing number of new cathinones, the number of consumers wishing to enrich their experience with these compounds is also growing, and the same can be said about the growing numbers of poisonings. The reason for overdosing is a lack of consumer awareness regarding composition of the product, with which they experiment, and even more, regarding concentration of psychoactive substances contained in the taken product...
2018: Forensic Toxicology
Shuntaro Matsuta, Noriaki Shima, Hidenao Kakehashi, Hiroe Kamata, Shihoko Nakano, Keiko Sasaki, Tooru Kamata, Hiroshi Nishioka, Akihiro Miki, Kei Zaitsu, Hitoshi Tsuchihashi, Munehiro Katagi
Purpose: This study aims to investigate the urinary metabolites of two common α-pyrrolidinophenones (PPs), α-pyrrolidinohexiophenone (α-PHP) and α-pyrrolidinoheptanophenone (α-PHPP). This report also aims to discuss the effects of alkyl chain lengths on the metabolism of PPs. Methods: Urinary metabolites of α-PHP and α-PHPP have been investigated by analyzing urine samples from their users ( n  = 13 each) by liquid chromatography-high-resolution tandem mass spectrometry using reference standards of the metabolites synthesized in our laboratory...
2018: Forensic Toxicology
Ewa Tomczak, Mateusz Kacper Woźniak, Marzena Kata, Marek Wiergowski, Beata Szpiech, Marek Biziuk
Purpose: The 4-chloromethcathinone (4-CMC) is a synthetic derivative of cathinone and belongs to new psychoactive substances. Neither data on the effects of 4-CMC on the human body, nor on nontoxic, toxic and lethal concentrations in biological materials have been published in the literature. This paper describes the results of an analysis of the blood concentrations of 4-CMC determined in 15 forensic cases related to nonfatal intoxication including driving under the influence, and fatalities including overdoses, suicide and traffic accidents...
2018: Forensic Toxicology
Tatsuyuki Kanamori, Yuko Togawa-Iwata, Hiroki Segawa, Tadashi Yamamuro, Kenji Kuwayama, Kenji Tsujikawa, Hiroyuki Inoue
Purpose: The usefulness of hepatocytes isolated from a liver-humanized mouse (PXB-cells) as a model in vitro system for the prediction of the in vivo metabolism of new drugs of abuse was evaluated. Methods: For the drug metabolism study, fentanyl, a powerful synthetic opioid, and acetylfentanyl, an N -acetyl analog of fentanyl, were selected as model drugs. PXB-cells were cultured with the drug for 24-48 h and then the media were collected and analyzed by liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry after deproteinization with acetonitrile...
2018: Forensic Toxicology
Shimpei Watanabe, Unnikrishnan Kuzhiumparambil, Shanlin Fu
Purpose: Identifying intake of synthetic cannabinoids generally requires the metabolism data of the drugs so that appropriate metabolite markers can be targeted in urine testing. However, the continuous appearance of new cannabinoids during the last decade has made it difficult to keep up with all the compounds including {1-[(1-methylpiperidin-2-yl)methyl]-1 H -indol-3-yl}(naphthalen-1-yl)methanone (AM1220). In this study, metabolism of AM1220 was investigated with human liver microsomes and the fungus Cunninghamella elegans ...
2018: Forensic Toxicology
Michal P Dybowski, Andrzej L Dawidowicz
Purpose: Analysis of drugs and their metabolites in biofluids usually demands the application of sample preparation methods that allow for full isolation of analyzed substances from the matrix. The purpose of this study was to develop a method using the QuEChERS procedure for analysis of Δ9 -tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), 11-hydroxy-Δ9 -tetrahydrocannabinol (11-OH-THC) and 11-nor-9-carboxy-Δ9 -tetrahydrocannabinol (11-COOH-THC). Methods: THC, 11-OH-THC and 11-COOH-THC were quantified in whole blood samples using QuEChERS extraction and gas chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry...
2018: Forensic Toxicology
Clara T Schoeder, Cornelius Hess, Burkhard Madea, Jens Meiler, Christa E Müller
Purpose: In the present study we characterized a series of synthetic cannabinoids containing various heterocyclic scaffolds that had been identified as constituents of "Spice", a preparation sold on the illicit drug market. All compounds were further investigated as potential ligands of the orphan receptors GPR18 and GPR55 that interact with some cannabinoids. Methods: The compounds were studied in radioligand binding assays to determine their affinity for human cannabinoid CB1 and CB2 receptors expressed in CHO cells, and in cAMP accumulation assays to study their functionality...
2018: Forensic Toxicology
Craig McKenzie, Oliver B Sutcliffe, Kevin D Read, Paul Scullion, Ola Epemolu, Daniel Fletcher, Anders Helander, Olof Beck, Alexia Rylski, Lysbeth H Antonides, Jennifer Riley, Shannah A Smith, Niamh Nic Daeid
Purpose: The detection of a novel psychoactive substance, 2F-MT-45, a fluorinated analogue of the synthetic opioid MT-45, was reported in a single seized tablet. MT-45, 2F-, 3F- and 4F-MT-45 were synthesised and reference analytical data were reported. The in vitro and in vivo metabolisms of MT-45 and 2F-MT-45 were investigated. Method: The reference standards and seized sample were characterised using nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, ultra-performance liquid chromatography-quadrupole time of flight mass spectrometry, gas chromatography-mass spectrometry, attenuated total reflectance-Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy and Raman spectroscopy...
2018: Forensic Toxicology
Takaya Murakami, Yoshiaki Iwamuro, Reiko Ishimaru, Satoshi Chinaka, Nariaki Takayama, Hiroshi Hasegawa
Purpose: Positional isomer differentiation is crucial for forensic analysis. The aim of this study was to differentiate AB-FUBINACA positional isomers using liquid chromatography (LC)-electrospray ionization (ESI)-linear ion trap mass spectrometry (LIT-MS) and LC-ESI-triple quadrupole mass spectrometry (QqQ-MS). Methods: AB-FUBINACA, its two fluorine positional isomers on the phenyl ring, and three methyl positional isomers in the carboxamide side chain were analyzed by LC-ESI-LIT-MS and LC-ESI-QqQ-MS...
2018: Forensic Toxicology
Jakub Wojcieszak, Dariusz Andrzejczak, Adam Wojtas, Krystyna Gołembiowska, Jolanta B Zawilska
Purpose: Pyrovalerone derivatives (α-pyrrolidinophenones) form a distinct branch of synthetic cathinones, a popular group of novel psychoactive substances, and exert strong psychostimulatory effects resulting from their high potency to inhibit dopamine (DA) and norepinephrine transporters, with negligible activity at the serotonin (5-HT) transporter. In contrast to the old generation α-pyrrolidinophenones, 3,4-MDPV and α-PVP, there is limited data on the pharmacology and toxicology of the novel analogs...
2018: Forensic Toxicology
Katarzyna Ambroziak, Piotr Adamowicz
Purpose: In recent years, many synthetic cannabinoids (SCs) have appeared on the drug market. Despite the increasing number of SCs, there are few comprehensive screening methods for their detection in biological specimens. In this context, the purpose of this study was to develop a fast and simple liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry screening procedure for detection and identification of SCs in whole blood. Methods: The elaborated qualitative screening method allows the simultaneous detection and identification of 72 compounds from different chemical groups: naphthoylindoles, naphthoylindazoles, benzoylindoles, phenylacetylindoles, tetramethylcyclopropylindoles, indole-3-carboxylic acid esters, indole-3-carboxylic acid amides, indazole-3-carboxylic acid amides, and others...
2018: Forensic Toxicology
Ken-Ichi Sugie, Daisuke Kurakami, Mamoru Akutsu, Koichi Saito
Purpose: Phenethylamines constitute the majority of drug-related arrests in Japan. Recently, the smuggling of tert -butoxycarbonyl ( t -Boc)-protected phenethylamines has become of increasing concern, because of the difficult identification of these masked substances. Methods: In this study, a rapid and accurate method for the detection of t -Boc-methamphetamine ( t -Boc-MP) by direct analysis in real time-time-of-flight-mass spectrometry (DART-TOF-MS) was developed...
2018: Forensic Toxicology
Piotr Kuś, Joachim Kusz, Maria Książek, Ewelina Pieprzyca, Marcin Rojkiewicz
Purpose: Two compounds newly found in the seizures by drug enforcement agencies were identified and characterized by various instrumental analytical methods. Methods: The obtained powder samples were analyzed by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS), liquid chromatography-mass spectrometryn (LC-MSn), nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy, infrared and Raman spectroscopy and X-ray crystallography. Results: The two compounds were tentatively identified as 4-chloro-α-PVP and 4-MDMC by GC-MS, and LC-MS/MS...
2018: Forensic Toxicology
Marcin Rojkiewicz, Piotr Kuś, Joachim Kusz, Maria Książek
Purpose: In this study, we performed identification and physicochemical characterization of two cathinone derivatives, 4-FPD and 4-MEAP, found in market-available materials. Methods: The compounds were characterized by electrospray ionization ion trap mass spectrometry (MS) in MS2 and MS3 modes, gas chromatography-MS, infrared, Raman and ultraviolet-visible spectroscopies, X-ray crystallography, differential scanning calorimetry and nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy...
2018: Forensic Toxicology
Akira Mochizuki, Hiroko Nakazawa, Noboru Adachi, Kenichi Takekawa, Hideki Shojo
Purpose: We encountered a curious case in which two male subjects self-administered mepirapim plus acetyl fentanyl by different routes, i.e., intravenously and by inhalation. We have thus established a detailed procedure for quantification of mepirapim and acetyl fentanyl in whole blood and urine specimens using gas chromatography (GC)-tandem mass spectrometry (MS/MS). Methods: The GC-MS/MS method was validated for linearity, extraction recovery, accuracy, and precision...
2018: Forensic Toxicology
Harald John, Marcel J van der Schans, Marianne Koller, Helma E T Spruit, Franz Worek, Horst Thiermann, Daan Noort
During the United Nations fact-finding mission to investigate the alleged use of chemical warfare agents in the Syrian Arab Republic in 2013, numerous tissues from a deceased female victim, who had displayed symptoms of cholinergic crisis, were collected. The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) authorized two specialized laboratories in the Netherlands and Germany for forensic analysis of these samples. Diverse modern mass spectrometry (MS)-based procedures in combination with either liquid chromatography (LC) or gas chromatography (GC) separation were applied...
2018: Forensic Toxicology
Takahiro Doi, Takaomi Tagami, Akihiro Takeda, Akiko Asada, Yoshiyuki Sawabe
Recently, carboxamide-type synthetic cannabinoids have been distributed globally as new psychoactive substances (NPS). Some of these compounds possess asymmetric carbon, which is derived from an amide moiety composed of amino acid derivatives (i.e., amides or esters of amino acids). In this study, we synthesized both enantiomers of synthetic cannabinoids, N-(1-amino-3-methyl-1-oxobutan-2-yl)-1-(2-fluorobenzyl)-1H-indazole-3-carboxamide (AB-FUBINACA 2-fluorobenzyl isomer), N-(1-amino-1-oxo-3-phenylpropan-2-yl)-1-(cyclohexylmethyl)-1H-indazole-3-carboxamide (APP-CHMINACA), ethyl [1-(5-fluoropentyl)-1H-indazole-3-carbonyl]valinate (5F-EMB-PINACA), ethyl [1-(4-fluorobenzyl)-1H-indazole-3-carbonyl]valinate (EMB-FUBINACA), and methyl 2-[1-(4-fluorobenzyl)-1H-indole-3-carboxamido]-3,3-dimethylbutanoate (MDMB-FUBICA), which were reported as NPS found in Europe from 2014 to 2015, to evaluate their activities as CB1/CB2 receptor agonists...
2018: Forensic Toxicology
Milena Majchrzak, Rafał Celiński, Piotr Kuś, Teresa Kowalska, Mieczysław Sajewicz
Purpose: Currently, among new psychoactive substances, cathinone derivatives constitute the biggest group, which are mainly classified into N-alkylated, 3,4-methylenedioxy-N-alkylated, N-pyrrolidinyl, and 3,4-methylenedioxy-N-pyrrolidinyl derivatives. These derivatives are actively being subjected to minor modifications at the alkyl chains or the aromatic ring to create new synthetic cathinones with the goal of circumventing laws. In this review, the new synthetic cathinones that have appeared on the illegal drug market during the period 2014-2017 are highlighted, and their characterization by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry and liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry is presented...
2018: Forensic Toxicology
Nektaria Misailidi, Ioannis Papoutsis, Panagiota Nikolaou, Artemisia Dona, Chara Spiliopoulou, Sotiris Athanaselis
Purpose: Ocfentanil and carfentanil are two potent synthetic opioids that are analogues of fentanyl and are actively involved in the recent fentanyl crisis. The aim of this review is to provide all the available information on these two fentanyl analogues. Methods: All reviewed information was gathered through a detailed search of PubMed and the World Wide Web using relevant keywords. Results: Like most of the members of the family of fentanyls, they are either sold as heroin to unsuspecting users or used extensively to lace heroin street samples...
2018: Forensic Toxicology
Engy Shokry, Jair Gonzalez Marques, Paulo César Ragazzo, Naiara Zedes Pereira, Nelson Roberto Antoniosi Filho
In this work, we presented, for the first time, earwax as an alternative forensic specimen for detecting 12 neuropsychotic drugs employing liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry in positive and negative ion modes after straightforward extraction with methanol. The method was validated and standard curves were established by external calibration with correlation coefficients >0.99. All precision, accuracy, matrix effects, extraction recoveries, and carryover were within acceptable limits; limits of quantification were sufficiently low to quantify almost all the samples tested...
2017: Forensic Toxicology
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