Evaluation of the Cedia heroin metabolite (6-AM) immunoassay with urine specimens from A criminal justice drug-testing program.J Anal Toxicol. 2005 Apr; 29(3):201-4.JA
The ability to differentiate illicit from legitimate drug use in a drug-testing program would decrease costs by reducing the number of screening specimens requiring confirmation and also reduce the stigma attached to positive preliminary test results. Because many screening tests for drug detection use immunoassays, increasing the specificity of these tests has been a goal of manufacturers. In this study we evaluated the utility of one such assay, the Cedia heroin metabolite (6-acetylmorphine, 6-AM) assay to reliably detect heroin use. Specimens (N = 525) from a criminal justice drug-testing program were screened with this assay (cutoff concentration = 10 ng/mL 6-AM) and any positive samples were confirmed by gas chromatographic-mass spectrometric analysis (lower reporting limit for 6-AM = 5 ng/mL). The confirmation rate for the enzyme immunoassay (EIA) was 98% (517/525). Specimens contained 6-AM at concentrations ranging from 5 to 16,923 ng/mL (mean = 1251; median = 317). All confirmed specimens also contained morphine (range: 8-222,427 ng/mL; mean = 11,203 ; median = 4134). When challenged with standard drug solutions, the EIA correctly identified drug-free urine and produced positive results (lowest concentration, in ng/mL, that produced a positive result) with morphine at 10,000; oxycodone at 61,000; codeine at 60,000; hydromorphone at 10,000; hydrocodone at 60,000, 6-AM at 10, and pentazocine at 35,000 ng/mL. The Cedia heroin metabolite (6-AM) assay produced a high confirmation rate when challenged with urine specimens and therefore should be a useful tool in forensic toxicology. Potential users should be aware that high concentrations of other opioids (e.g., morphine, oxycodone) and structurally related compounds (e.g., pentazocine) may produce positive results.