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Simultaneous Detection of Ten Psychedelic Phenethylamines in Urine by Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry

NCJ Number
Journal of Analytical Toxicology Volume: 35 Issue: 7 Dated: 2011 Pages: 459-469
Date Published
11 pages

The purpose of this study was to develop a procedure for the detection of psychedelic amphetamines using techniques that are widely accepted in forensic toxicology laboratories.


Psychedelic phenethylamines are an emerging class of designer drugs capable of producing a complex array of sought-after adrenergic and hallucinogenic effects. Toxicological detection poses many challenges to laboratories. In the current study, 10 target analytes were selected: 2,5-dimethoxy-4-bromophenethylamine (2C-B), 2,5-dimethoxyphenethylamine (2C-H), 2,5-dimethoxy-4-iodophenethylamine (2C-I), 2,5-dimethoxy-4-ethylthiophenethylamine (2C-T-2), 2,5-dimethoxy-4-(n)-propylthiophenethylamine (2C-T-7), 4-methylthioamphetamine (4-MTA), 2,5-dimethoxy-4-bromoamphetamine (DOB), 2,5-dimethoxy-4-ethylamphetamine (DOET), 2,5-dimethoxy-4-iodoamphetamine (DOI), and 2,5-dimethoxy-4-methylamphetamine (DOM). Target drugs in urine were analyzed by gas chromatography in selected ion monitoring mode after mixed-mode solid-phase extraction. Limits of detection for all analytes were 2–10 ng/mL, and limits of quantitation were 10 ng/mL or less. Precision evaluated at 50 and 500 ng/mL yielded CVs of 0.4–7.9 percent and accuracy in the range 91–116 percent. Calibration curves were linear to 1500 ng/mL using mescaline-d9 as the internal standard. No carryover was evident at 5000 ng/mL (the highest concentration tested) and no interferences were observed from the presence of other structurally related compounds or endogenous bases. (publisher abstract modified)

Date Published: January 1, 2011