Preprint Article Version 1 Preserved in Portico This version is not peer-reviewed

Metabolite Structure Assignment of Seized Products Containing Cathinone Derivatives through High Resolution Analytical Techniques

Version 1 : Received: 1 February 2021 / Approved: 2 February 2021 / Online: 2 February 2021 (09:44:23 CET)

A peer-reviewed article of this Preprint also exists.

Gonçalves, J.L.; Alves, V.L.; Aguiar, J.; Caldeira, M.J.; Teixeira, H.M.; Câmara, J.S. Structure Assignment of Seized Products Containing Cathinone Derivatives Using High Resolution Analytical Techniques. Metabolites 2021, 11, 144. Gonçalves, J.L.; Alves, V.L.; Aguiar, J.; Caldeira, M.J.; Teixeira, H.M.; Câmara, J.S. Structure Assignment of Seized Products Containing Cathinone Derivatives Using High Resolution Analytical Techniques. Metabolites 2021, 11, 144.

Journal reference: Metabolites 2021, 11, 144
DOI: 10.3390/metabo11030144

Abstract

The innovation of the new psychoactive substances (NPS) market requires the rapid identification of new substances that can be a risk to public health, in order to reduce the damage due to their use. Twelve seized products suspected to contain illicit substances were analyzed by attenuated total reflectance Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (ATR-FTIR), gas chromatography coupled to mass spectrometry (GC-MS), and nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy (NMR). Synthetic cathinones (SCat) were found in all products, either as a single component or in mixtures. Infrared spectra of all products were consistent with the molecular structure of SCat, showing an intense absorption band at 1700–1674 cm‐1, corresponding to the carbonyl stretching, a medium/strong peak at 1605-1580 cm-1, indicating stretching vibrations in the aromatic ring (C=C) and bands with relative low intensity at frequencies near 2700–2400 cm-1, corresponding to an amine salt. It was possible to identify a total of eight cathinone derivatives by GC-MS and NMR analysis: 4’-methyl-α-pyrrolidinohexanophenone (MPHP), α-pyrrolidinohexanophenone (α-PHP), 3-fluoromethcathinone (3-FMC), methedrone, methylone, buphedrone, N-ethylcathinone, and pentedrone. Among the adulterants found in these samples, caffeine was the most frequently detected substance, followed by ethylphenidate. These results highlight the prevalence of SCat in seized materials of the Portuguese market. Reference standards are usually required for confirmation, but when reference materials are not available, the combination of complementary techniques is fundamental for a rapid and an unequivocal identification of such substances.

Keywords

Chemical characterization; New psychoactive substances; Synthetic cathinones; FTIR; GC-MS; NMR

Comments (0)

We encourage comments and feedback from a broad range of readers. See criteria for comments and our diversity statement.

Leave a public comment
Send a private comment to the author(s)
Views 0
Downloads 0
Comments 0
Metrics 0


×
Alerts
Notify me about updates to this article or when a peer-reviewed version is published.
We use cookies on our website to ensure you get the best experience.
Read more about our cookies here.