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Optimized conditions for simultaneous determination of opiates, cocaine and benzoylecgonine in hair samples by GC--MS.

Authors
  • Romolo, F S
  • Rotolo, M C
  • Palmi, I
  • Pacifici, R
  • Lopez, A
Type
Published Article
Journal
Forensic Science International
Publisher
Elsevier
Publication Date
Dec 17, 2003
Volume
138
Issue
1-3
Pages
17–26
Identifiers
PMID: 14642715
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

The present paper describes a qualitative and quantitative method for the simultaneous detection of opiates, cocaine and benzoylecgonine from human hair samples. Every step of the analytical procedure was studied to find the optimized conditions. Nine different incubation systems were examined. The influence of different pH values of samples on the isolation of analytes from the incubation media by Bond Elut cartridges and the stability of the compounds of interest in the different incubation media and conditions were investigated. The extracting power of different incubation media was studied as well. The phosphate buffer 0.1 N at pH 5 was chosen as the extraction medium in an optimized procedure for simultaneous determination of opiates, cocaine and benzoylecgonine in hair samples. The method developed was validated. Recoveries were 90% for morphine (M), 81% for 6-monoacetylmorphine (6-AM), 90% for codeine (CD), 86% for cocaine (C) and 90% for benzoylecgonine (BE). Relative standard deviation for inter-day precision was better than 12%. The limits of detection resulted as 0.05 ng/mg for M and C, as 0.08 for 6-AM and as 0.2 ng/mg for BE. Forty hair samples collected from drug abusers admitted to centers for detoxification treatment were analyzed obtaining 23 positive results for opiates and/or cocaine. Twelve hair specimens longer than 10 cm were analyzed following a sectional approach. In the six positive cases, it was interesting to find that the 6-AM/M ratio generally decreased for each sample from the proximal segment to the distal segments. Moreover, the 6-AM/M ratio was generally lower than 1 in the intermediate and distal segments.

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