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Detection of Fentanyl Analogs and Synthetic Opioids in Real Hair Samples.
J Anal Toxicol. 2019 May 01; 43(4):259-265.JA

Abstract

Novel synthetic opioids include various analogs of fentanyl and emerging non-fentanyl compounds with different chemical structures, such as AH-7921, MT-45 and U-47700. In recent years, these drugs have rapidly emerged on the drug market, and their abuse has been increasing worldwide. The motivations for use of these new compounds include their legal status, ready availability, low cost, users' curiosity or preference for their particular pharmacological properties and the intention to avoid detection. Furthermore, more common drugs like heroin are now increasingly being replaced or cut with fentanyl or new designer opioids; thus, many drug users are unintentionally or unknowingly using synthetic fentanyl analogs. In this scenario, the detection of new psychoactive substances in hair can provide insight into their current diffusion among the population and social characteristics of these synthetic drug users. In this manuscript, we describe a simple, fast, specific and sensitive UHPLC-MS-MS method able to detect 13 synthetic opioids (including fentanyl analogs) and metabolites in hair samples. Furthermore, the method includes the detection of 4-anilino-N-phenethyl-piperidine (4-ANPP), which is considered both a precursor and a metabolite of several fentanyl analogs. The method was applied to 34 real hair samples collected in New York City from subjects who had reported past-year non-medical opioid and/or heroin use. In total, 17 samples tested positive for at least one target analyte, with oxycodone (nine samples) and tramadol (eight samples) being the most common. Among these, the method was able to quantify furanyl-fentanyl and fentanyl in the pg/mg range in two samples. Simultaneously, also 4-ANPP was detected, giving evidence for the first time that this compound can be selected as a marker of fentanyl analogs use via hair testing. In conclusion, this study confirmed the increasing diffusion of new synthetic opioids and "fentalogs" with high potency among non-medical opioid users.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Centro Regionale Antidoping e di Tossicologia "A. Bertinaria", Orbassano, Turin, Italy.Department of Population Health, New York University Langone Medical Center. Center for Drug Use and HIV/HCV Research, New York University College of Nursing New York, NY, USA.Dipartimento di Chimica, Università di Torino, Turin, Italy.Centro Regionale Antidoping e di Tossicologia "A. Bertinaria", Orbassano, Turin, Italy.Centro Regionale Antidoping e di Tossicologia "A. Bertinaria", Orbassano, Turin, Italy.Centro Regionale Antidoping e di Tossicologia "A. Bertinaria", Orbassano, Turin, Italy. Dipartimento di Chimica, Università di Torino, Turin, Italy.

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article

Language

eng

PubMed ID

30462247

Citation

Salomone, Alberto, et al. "Detection of Fentanyl Analogs and Synthetic Opioids in Real Hair Samples." Journal of Analytical Toxicology, vol. 43, no. 4, 2019, pp. 259-265.
Salomone A, Palamar JJ, Bigiarini R, et al. Detection of Fentanyl Analogs and Synthetic Opioids in Real Hair Samples. J Anal Toxicol. 2019;43(4):259-265.
Salomone, A., Palamar, J. J., Bigiarini, R., Gerace, E., Di Corcia, D., & Vincenti, M. (2019). Detection of Fentanyl Analogs and Synthetic Opioids in Real Hair Samples. Journal of Analytical Toxicology, 43(4), 259-265. https://doi.org/10.1093/jat/bky093
Salomone A, et al. Detection of Fentanyl Analogs and Synthetic Opioids in Real Hair Samples. J Anal Toxicol. 2019 May 1;43(4):259-265. PubMed PMID: 30462247.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Detection of Fentanyl Analogs and Synthetic Opioids in Real Hair Samples. AU - Salomone,Alberto, AU - Palamar,Joseph J, AU - Bigiarini,Rachele, AU - Gerace,Enrico, AU - Di Corcia,Daniele, AU - Vincenti,Marco, PY - 2018/06/21/received PY - 2018/09/17/revised PY - 2018/10/23/accepted PY - 2018/11/22/pubmed PY - 2019/10/8/medline PY - 2018/11/22/entrez SP - 259 EP - 265 JF - Journal of analytical toxicology JO - J Anal Toxicol VL - 43 IS - 4 N2 - Novel synthetic opioids include various analogs of fentanyl and emerging non-fentanyl compounds with different chemical structures, such as AH-7921, MT-45 and U-47700. In recent years, these drugs have rapidly emerged on the drug market, and their abuse has been increasing worldwide. The motivations for use of these new compounds include their legal status, ready availability, low cost, users' curiosity or preference for their particular pharmacological properties and the intention to avoid detection. Furthermore, more common drugs like heroin are now increasingly being replaced or cut with fentanyl or new designer opioids; thus, many drug users are unintentionally or unknowingly using synthetic fentanyl analogs. In this scenario, the detection of new psychoactive substances in hair can provide insight into their current diffusion among the population and social characteristics of these synthetic drug users. In this manuscript, we describe a simple, fast, specific and sensitive UHPLC-MS-MS method able to detect 13 synthetic opioids (including fentanyl analogs) and metabolites in hair samples. Furthermore, the method includes the detection of 4-anilino-N-phenethyl-piperidine (4-ANPP), which is considered both a precursor and a metabolite of several fentanyl analogs. The method was applied to 34 real hair samples collected in New York City from subjects who had reported past-year non-medical opioid and/or heroin use. In total, 17 samples tested positive for at least one target analyte, with oxycodone (nine samples) and tramadol (eight samples) being the most common. Among these, the method was able to quantify furanyl-fentanyl and fentanyl in the pg/mg range in two samples. Simultaneously, also 4-ANPP was detected, giving evidence for the first time that this compound can be selected as a marker of fentanyl analogs use via hair testing. In conclusion, this study confirmed the increasing diffusion of new synthetic opioids and "fentalogs" with high potency among non-medical opioid users. SN - 1945-2403 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/30462247/Detection_of_Fentanyl_Analogs_and_Synthetic_Opioids_in_Real_Hair_Samples_ L2 - https://academic.oup.com/jat/article-lookup/doi/10.1093/jat/bky093 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -