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Automated Derivatization and Identification of Controlled Substances via Total Vaporization Solid Phase Microextraction (TV-SPME) and Gas Chromatography/Mass Spectrometry (GC/MS)

NCJ Number
Date Published
November 2018
14 pages
This is the Final Summary Overview of a project with the objective of improving the analysis of thermally unstable drugs by gas chromatography/mass spectrometry through a combination of derivatization and a novel total vaporization technique (Total Vaporization - Solid Phase Microextraction).

The hypothesis tested was that Total Vaporization - Solid Phase Microextraction (TV-SPME) will offer greater sensitivity than traditional liquid injection for controlled substances. In addition, TV-SPME was easily adapted to include either a pre-extraction or a post-extraction on-fiber derivatization step for thermally labile species. Project results were promising for all drug classes that were analyzed successfully by on-fiber derivatization as solutions. This discovery greatly improves the utility of the technique, since controlled substances are most often encountered in their solid forms in forensic science laboratories. The application of this technique to beverage samples and solid drug powders is of most interest, since these applications involve a significant decrease in sample preparation. Although not ideal for all analytes, TV-SPME with on-fiber derivatization could be a powerful technique for amine and hydroxylamine controlled substances, as well as GHB. The technique could increase analyst efficiency by reducing sample preparation time for these types of analytes. Thus, the main results of this project are a set of optimized derivatization methods that can be used in liquid injection or TV-SPfsME. This approach offers the possibility of automated sampling and derivatization for a wide variety of thermally labile compounds and the analysis of compounds that require no derivatization. Project design and methods are described. 4 figures and 1 table

Date Published: November 1, 2018