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Quantification of the Amphetamine Content in Seized Street Samples by Raman Spectroscopy

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A Raman spectroscopy method for determining the drug content of street samples of amphetamine was developed by dissolving samples in an acidic solution containing an internal standard (sodium dihydrogen phosphate). The Raman spectra of the samples were measured with a CDD-Raman spectrometer. Two Raman quantification methods were used: (1) relative peak heights of characteristic signals of the amphetamine and the internal standard; and (2) multivariate calibration by partial least squares (PLS) based on second derivative of the spectra. For the determination of the peak height ratio, the spectra were baseline corrected and the peak height ratio (hamphetamine at 994 cm−1/hinternal standard at 880 cm−1) was calculated. For the PLS analysis, the wave number interval of 1300–630 cm−1 (348 data points) was chosen. No manual baseline correction was performed, but the spectra were differentiated twice to obtain their second derivatives, which were further analyzed. The Raman results were well in line with validated reference LC results when the Raman samples were analyzed within 2 h after dissolution. The present results clearly show that Raman spectroscopy is a good tool for rapid (acquisition time 1 min) and accurate quantitative analysis of street samples that contain illicit drugs and unknown adulterants and impurities.
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Keywords: Raman spectroscopy; amphetamine; forensic science; quantification; seized street samples

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Pharmaceutics, University of Kuopio, PO Box 1627, FIN-70211 Kuopio, Finland. 2: Crime Laboratory, National Bureau of Investigation, PO Box 285, FIN-01301 Vantaa, Finland. 3: VTT, Optical Instrument Centre, PO Box 1100, FIN-90571 Oulu, Finland.

Publication date: January 1, 2007

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