Simultaneous determination of 13 amphetamine related drugs in human whole blood using an enhanced polymer column and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry

Keiko Kudo, Tomomi Ishida, Kenji Hara, Seiichi Kashimura, Akiko Tsuji, Noriaki Ikeda

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40 Citations (Scopus)


Metamphetamine (MA) is one of the most frequently encountered abused drugs in Japan and the Triage™ immunoassay kit is often used to screen for this drug. However, immunoassay screening also gives positive results with other structurally related compounds, such as 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA), 3,4-methylenedioxyamphetamine (MDA), p-methoxyamphetamine (PMA), an ephedrine metabolite and β-phenethylamine (PEA). Therefore, it is important to develop a simple and reliable method which can determine these drugs simultaneously. This paper describes a simple method for simultaneous identification and quantification of 13 amphetamine related drugs in human whole blood. The method consists of a solid phase extraction using a new polar-enhanced Focus™ column followed by acetylation and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry in the scan mode. Tetradeuterated MA and trideuterated methylephedrine (ME) were used as internal standards. As the Focus™ column required only simple extraction steps and provided a clean extract, identification of each drug was feasible even at low concentrations. The calibration curves were linear over the concentration range from 50 to 5000 ng/ml for all drugs with correlation coefficients that exceeded 0.99. The lower limits of detection of the drugs were 5-50 ng/ml. The absolute recoveries for the drugs were 65-95% and 64-89% at concentrations of 100 and 1000 ng/ml, respectively. Accuracy and precision data were satisfactory when using 2 internal standards. The applicability of the assay was proven by the analysis of blood samples in forensic cases. This method should be most useful for confirmation of positive immunoassay results for amphetamines and related drugs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)115-120
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Chromatography B: Analytical Technologies in the Biomedical and Life Sciences
Issue number1 SPEC. ISS.
Publication statusPublished - Aug 1 2007

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Biochemistry
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Cell Biology


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