Drugs analysis
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Drugs: Analysis. Summary. Analysis of Chemical Drugs Instrumental Examination Botanical Examination. Chemical Examination. White Powder or Pills. What are they?. Drugs > Chemical Exam. 3 steps in processing unknown chemicals:. Screening step. Sample preparation step. Confirmatory test.

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Drugs: Analysis

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Drugs: Analysis


Summary

  • Analysis of Chemical Drugs

  • Instrumental Examination

  • Botanical Examination


Chemical Examination

White Powder or Pills

What are they?


Drugs > Chemical Exam

3 steps in processing unknown chemicals:

  • Screening step

  • Sample preparation step

  • Confirmatory test


Drugs > Chemical Exam > Screening

Color Test

  • Small amount of chemical in spot plate

  • Drop of color changing reagent added

  • Color change noted


Drugs > Chemical Exam > Screening

Color Test

  • Several tests done at same time.

  • Adulterants or diluents may affect color


Drugs > Chemical Exam > Screening

Microcrystal Test

  • Small amount of sample dissolved in solution.

  • Test reagent added; contains another chemical that reacts with drug.

  • Insoluble crystal formed.


Drugs > Chemical Exam > Screening

Microcrystal Test

  • Shape of crystal suggests type of drug.

  • Impurities may cause unusual crystal formation.


Drugs > Chemical Exam > Screening

Thin Layer Chromatography (TLC)

  • Dot of drug placed at bottom of paper or thin silica plate

  • Bottom dipped in solvent; solvent diffuses up plate

  • Solvent carries drug up paper; distance depends on drug


Drugs > Chemical Exam > Screening

Thin Layer Chromatography (TLC)

  • Different solvents result in different distances

  • Some systems include color change components


Drugs > Chemical Exam > Screening

UV Spectroscopy

  • Sample dissolved in liquid; placed in cuvette.

  • A range of UV light wavelengths are passed through solution.

  • Some light will pass through; some light will be absorbed


Drugs > Chemical Exam > Screening

UV Spectroscopy

Different drugs create a different pattern


Drugs > Chemical Exam > Screening

Gas Chromatography

Similar to TLC; different chemicals will move at different rates through a capillary.


Drugs > Chemical Exam > Screening

Gas Chromatography

The time it takes to pass through the capillary gives an indication of which drug it is.


Botanical Examination

With botanical evidence, additional steps can be added to the screening process.


Drugs > Botanical Exam

Marijuana

  • Macroscopic Exam: Leaf and stem structure

  • Microscopic Exam: Tiny hairs on leaf surface


Drugs > Botanical Exam

Marijuana (Resin ID)

Color test:

Tests for chemical THC

TLC:

Tests for chemical THC


Drugs > Botanical Exam

Peyote

Macroscopic Exam:

Look for cotton-like tufts

Test for alkaloids:

TLC & Gas chromatography

Confirming mescaline not necessary


Drugs > Botanical Exam

Mushrooms

Macroscopic Exam:

Can identify mushrooms that contain psilocybin

Screen for psilocybin:

Color test, TLC, and UV spectroscopy

Confirmed with MS and IR spec (later slides)


Drugs

Screening Summary

  • All screening tests give an indication of what the drug is.

  • Since some drugs behave alike during screening tests, confirmation of the drug type is needed.


Drugs

Sample Preparation

  • In many cases, the identity of the drug must be confirmed for prosecution.

  • Before identification, it must be separated from other chemicals in the mixture


Drugs > Sample Preparation

Sample Preparation (Separation)

Physical Separation: particles are separated based on microscopic appearance.

Dry Wash or Dry Extraction

Dry Wash: Liquid dissolves adulterants; solid drug left behind

Dry Extraction: Liquid dissolves drug; solid adulterants left behind


Drugs > Sample Preparation

Sample Preparation (Separation)

  • Liquid/Liquid Extraction:

    • Entire sample dissolved in aqueous (water) liquid

    • Organic liquid (oil-like) mixed with solution

    • Organic liquid removes adulterants

    • Sample remains in aqueous layer


Confirmation Techniques

Heroin?

Confirmation identifies the specific type of drug.


Drugs > Confirmation

Mass Spectroscopy

  • MS will smash a molecule into pieces and measure the mass of the pieces.

  • Every drug will break in a unique way, creating a unique amount of pieces.


Drugs > Confirmation

Mass Spectroscopy


Drugs > Confirmation

Infrared Spectroscopy

  • Similar to UV spectroscopy, except a range of infrared light wavelengths are passed through a sample.

  • Some light passes through; some light is absorbed.


Drugs > Confirmation

Infrared Spectroscopy

  • Different drugs = different patterns

  • Pattern is specific to one drug


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