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Thin Layer Chromatography/Fluorescence Detection of 3,4-Methylenedioxy-Methamphetamine and Related Compounds

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A rapid and sensitive method for the detection of six methylenedioxylatedphenethylamines, 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA); 3,4-methylenedioxyamphetamine; 3,4-methylenedioxyethylamphetamine; N-methyl-1-(3,4-methylenedioxyphenyl)-2-butamine; N-methyl-1-(3,4-methylenedioxyphenyl)-3-butamine; and 3,4-methylenedioxydimethylamphetamine, by thin-layer chromatography with fluorescence detection is proposed. These compounds form fluorophores on the developing plate following spraying with a reagent consisting of sodium hypochlorite, potassium hexacyanoferrate (III), and sodium hydroxide, and heating for 3 min at 100°C. Blue fluorescent spots were observed under ultraviolet light in a wavelength range of 250–400 nm. The detection limits for MDMA and the above related compounds were 50 ng. The proposed method was effectively applied to the detection of MDMA in urine samples.

Keywords: 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA); TLC; fluorescence detection; forensic science; urine

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Scientific Crime Laboratory, Kanagawa Prefectural Police Headquarters, 155-1 Yamashita-cho, Naka-ku, Yokohama, Kanagawa 231-0023, Japan. 2: National Research Institute of Police Science, National Police Agency, 6-3-1 Kashiwanoha, Kashiwa, Chiba 277-0882, Japan. 3: Graduate School of Natural Science and Technology, Kanazawa University, Kakuma-machi, Kanazawa, Ishikawa 920-1192, Japan.

Publication date: November 1, 2008


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