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Review Article

Toxicological Advancements in Cocaine Detection: A Review

[ Vol. 30 , Issue. 32 ]


Federico Giuseppe Patanè, Andreana Nicoletta Maria Maglitto, Massimiliano Esposito*, Giuseppe Cocimano, Nunzio Di Nunno, Monica Salerno and Francesco Sessa*   Pages 3616 - 3629 ( 14 )


Cocaine, also known as methyl benzoylecgonine, is one of the most used drugs of abuse and one of the oldest; however, there has been a recent increase in the consumption of this substance. This trend has once again caught the attention of the scientific community. We discuss the current knowledge about this drug, focusing our attention on the forensic approach. Despite the fact that the cut-off of positivity to cocaine in drug tests is quite high, most current tests are able to detect much lower concentrations and could improve forensic sciences in both post-mortem investigations and in people screening. Immunological assays possessing substantial cross-reactivity to cocaine are particularly useful for screening oral fluid, hair, and post-mortem blood, where significant concentrations of the drug can be found. Liquid chromatography has now supplanted the previous techniques because it is very sensitive and specific and allows samples to be analyzed in a shorter time with only minimal sample preparation. Recent studies have focused on increased sensitivity, reduced processing times, and cheaper analysis.


Forensic sciences, toxicology, cocaine, new detection methods, aptamers, methyl benzoylecgonine.


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