Sudden death could occur after assumption of illicit drugs for recreational purposes in adults or after intoxication in children, and toxicological testing would help identify the cause of the death. Analytical methods sensitive and specific for the quantification of a great number of drugs and metabolites in at least 2 matrices should be used. Bile, collected postmortem, may be considered a specimen alternative to blood and urine to perform toxicological testing because of its extended detection window. The present study proposed a LC–MS/MS method to quantify 108 drugs and metabolites in bile. Compounds belonging to the drugs of abuse classes of amphetamines, benzodiazepines, cocaine derivatives, barbiturates, opioids, z-drugs, and psychedelics were analyzed. The sample preparation is simple and does not require solid-phase extraction. The proposed method showed an appropriate selectivity, specificity, accuracy, and precision of the calibrators and quality controls tested (precision < 15%; accuracy < 100 ± 15%). The sensitivity allowed to identify low amounts of drugs (e.g., morphine limit of detection = 0.2 µg/L; limit of quantification = 1.1 µg/L). There is no significant matrix effect, except for buprenorphine and 11-Nor-9-carboxy-Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol. Carry-over was not present. Analytes were stable at least for 1 month at − 20 °C. Analyzing 13 postmortem specimens, methadone (50%), and cocaine (37.5%) resulted to be the most prevalent consumed substances; the concentrations quantified in bile resulted to be higher than the ones in blood suggesting bile as a potential new matrix for identifying illicit drugs and their metabolites.

Quantification of 108 illicit drugs and metabolites in bile matrix by LC–MS/MS for the toxicological testing of sudden death cases

Franzin, Martina;Peruch, Michela;Stocco, Gabriele;D’Errico, Stefano;Addobbati, Riccardo
2024-01-01

Abstract

Sudden death could occur after assumption of illicit drugs for recreational purposes in adults or after intoxication in children, and toxicological testing would help identify the cause of the death. Analytical methods sensitive and specific for the quantification of a great number of drugs and metabolites in at least 2 matrices should be used. Bile, collected postmortem, may be considered a specimen alternative to blood and urine to perform toxicological testing because of its extended detection window. The present study proposed a LC–MS/MS method to quantify 108 drugs and metabolites in bile. Compounds belonging to the drugs of abuse classes of amphetamines, benzodiazepines, cocaine derivatives, barbiturates, opioids, z-drugs, and psychedelics were analyzed. The sample preparation is simple and does not require solid-phase extraction. The proposed method showed an appropriate selectivity, specificity, accuracy, and precision of the calibrators and quality controls tested (precision < 15%; accuracy < 100 ± 15%). The sensitivity allowed to identify low amounts of drugs (e.g., morphine limit of detection = 0.2 µg/L; limit of quantification = 1.1 µg/L). There is no significant matrix effect, except for buprenorphine and 11-Nor-9-carboxy-Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol. Carry-over was not present. Analytes were stable at least for 1 month at − 20 °C. Analyzing 13 postmortem specimens, methadone (50%), and cocaine (37.5%) resulted to be the most prevalent consumed substances; the concentrations quantified in bile resulted to be higher than the ones in blood suggesting bile as a potential new matrix for identifying illicit drugs and their metabolites.
2024
5-dic-2023
Pubblicato
https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s00204-023-03631-z
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11368/3065938
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