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Watterson J.H.,Laurentian University | Desrosiers N.A.,Laurentian University | Betit C.C.,Laurentian University | Dean D.,Summit County Medical Examiners Office | Wyman J.F.,Franklin County Coroners Office
Journal of Analytical Toxicology | Year: 2010

Skeletal tissues from a domestic pig exposed to amitriptyline, diazepam, and pentobarbital were analyzed to determine the relative distribution of these drugs in bone. Following drug exposure and euthanasia, remains were allowed to decompose outdoors to complete skeletonization between summer 2007 and fall 2009. Remains were recovered and separated according to bone type. Twelve different bone types were pulverized and sampled in triplicate. Each bone sample underwent methanolic extraction (96 h, 50°C), followed by solid-phase extraction and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry in the selected ion monitoring mode. Mass-normalized assay responses underwent ANOVA with post-hoc testing, revealing bone type as a main effect for all three drugs, but not for the diazepam metabolite (nordiazepam). The assay response varied with respect to bone type by factors of 27, 39, and 20 for pentobarbital, diazepam, and amitriptyline, respectively. The relative distribution between bone type was qualitatively similar for the three administered drugs analyzed for, with the largest response obtained from rib for all three drugs. This is the first study, to the authors' knowledge, of the distribution of different drugs in various decomposed skeletal tissues in a controlled experiment using an animal model of comparable physiology to humans. These data have implications for the interpretive value of forensic drug measurements in skeletal tissues. © 2010 Publishing Technology. Source

Wyman J.F.,Franklin County Coroners Office | Wyman J.F.,Ohio State University | Wyman J.F.,Cuyahoga County Regional Forensic Science Laboratory | Dean D.E.,Ohio State University | And 10 more authors.
Journal of Forensic Sciences | Year: 2011

Drug levels in decomposed individuals are difficult to interpret. Concentrations of 16 drugs were monitored in tissues (blood, brain, liver, kidney, muscle, and soil) from decomposing pigs for 1week. Pigs were divided into groups (n=5) with each group receiving four drugs. Drug cocktails were prepared from pharmaceutical formulations. Intracardiac pentobarbital sacrificewas 4h after dosing, with tissue collection at 4, 24, 48, 96, and 168h postdosing. Samples were frozen until assay. Detection and quantitation of drugs were through solid phase extraction followed by gas chromatograph/mass spectrometer analysis. Brain and kidneys were not available after 48h; liver and muscle persisted for 1week. Concentration of drugs increased during decomposition. During 1week of decomposition, muscle showed average levels increasing but concentrations in liver were increased many fold, compared to muscle. Attempting to interpret drug levels in decomposed bodies may lead to incorrect conclusions about cause and manner of death. 2011 American Academy of Forensic Sciences. Published 2011. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the U.S.A. Source

Barnett R.,Franklin County Coroners Office | Baker D.D.,Franklin County Coroners Office | Kelly N.E.,Franklin County Coroners Office | McGuire C.E.,Franklin County Coroners Office | And 2 more authors.
Journal of Analytical Toxicology | Year: 2014

Designer drugs appear to be increasing in popularity because of the ease of obtaining these constituents, the lack of ability to identify the substance(s) in routine drug screening, the appeal of the drug(s) being 'safe' due to them being marketed as a 'legal high' and possibly due to stronger restrictions that are being placed on prescription drugs. As components of designer drugs are identified and regulated by the DEA, new constituents, or analogs, of these designer drugs are being manufactured to circumvent legislation. 2,5-Dimethoxy-4-chloroamphetamine (DOC) is a substituted alpha-methylated phenethylamine and acts as a selective serotonin receptor partial agonist. There is limited literature on this particular compound and no literature that attributes death to use of this drug alone. We present a case of a 37-year-old male found at home lying face down next to a book titled 'Psychedelic Chemistry' by Michael Valentine Smith and in the early stages of decomposition. The decedent was a known methamphetamine abuser. A peripheral blood sample collected at autopsy was sent to toxicology for routine analysis. Results yielded negative for the drugs of abuse classes on the enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay screen but was positive for DOC during routine GC-MS analysis. A urine sample collected at autopsy was subjected to a routine urine liquid/liquid analysis via GC-MS, and the specimen was positive for DOC. Quantification analyses showed DOC concentration levels to be 377 ng/mL in iliac blood; 3,193 ng/mL in urine; 3,143 ng/g in liver and 683 ng/g in brain. DOC was not detected in the gastric contents. Caffeine was the only other compound detected in blood and urine. Due to the lack of literature, we believe that this is the first case where death can be attributed to DOC alone. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press. Source

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