Rapid Update of Screening Methods for the Detection of New Psychoactive Substance Use 

by | Bioclinical, Forensics

In this presentation from a recent 'Advances in Forensics & Toxicology eSeminar' hosted by Separation Science in collaboration with Bruker, Bjorn Moosmann provides a convenient workflow for rapidly updating screening methods for the detection of new psychoactive substance use in human urine by software assisted metabolite identification.

The group of new psychoactive substances (NPS) pose a great challenge to the forensic field. In particular, synthetic cannabinoids (SC) offered for purchase have undergone significant structural changes over the last seven years, making immunochemical testing unsuitable. Consequently, mass spectrometric methods are the gold standard but have to be adapted frequently to include newly emerged compounds. Offering a non-invasive sample collection with a relatively wide window of detection, urine analysis is usually the method of choice for abstinence control. However, for urine analysis metabolite identification of the respective SC is inevitable since most of these compounds are metabolized extensively prior to renal excretion. Consequently, the metabolism of new SC needs to be known prior to updating analytical methods. In cases where no authentic human sample material with confirmed uptake of the particular compound is available, pooled human liver microsomes (pHLM) offer an inexpensive and fast alternative to gain preliminary data on phase I metabolites that may be relevant for analysis of human urine samples.

Why this approach?
The approach described here can be helpful for updating screening methods with metabolite information. This is necessary whenever dealing with analytes that are extensively metabolized such as SC. In other cases identification of metabolites along with the parent compound can serve as a plausibility check and may help in estimating the time of the last drug uptake.

About the presenter
Moosmann_80.jpgBjoern Moosmann studied pharmacy at the University of Heidelberg, Germany and received his degree in 2011. He completed his PhD thesis under the supervision of Prof. Dr. Volker Auwärter at the Institute of Forensic Medicine Freiburg, Germany in 2015 where he is currently employed as a postdoctoral researcher. His research areas are focused on hair analysis, various aspects of synthetic cannabinoids as well as designer benzodiazepines. He is the author of several scientific papers in various peer-reviewed journals on the above research areas and recipient of the TIAFT Young Scientist Award in 2011.

By viewing this presentation you will learn...

  • how to develop a convenient workflow to update HRMS-based screening methods for new psychoactive substances in a timely manner
  • how this approach is necessary when dealing with metabolites that are extensively metabolized such as synthetic cannabinoids.

Published  Aug 30, 2018

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