Annales de Toxicologie Analytique
Since humans exist on Earth, there have been intoxications with plants. Toxic plants were even used to win battles and wars and famous historical figures and artists were victims of plants. It has been rumoured that Alexander the Great (356-323 B.C.) was intoxicated by white hellebore (Veratrum album, Liliaceae). The painter Vincent Van Gogh (1853-1890) drank frequently alcohol in excess and mainly absinthe prepared from Artemisia absinthium (Asteraceae) which caused some mental disorders.
... tal disorders. Since a couple of years, intoxications with medicinal plants, edible plants and herbal medicines are becoming more and more frequent. This is due to the fact that numerous persons are interested in all what is natural and believe that natural means safe! In Switzerland, for example, there are about eight times more intoxications with plants than with mushrooms. This is due to the poor botanical knowledge of many people who collect plants themselves. Confusions between Allium ursinum (Liliaceae) and Colchicum autumnale, and even Convallaria majalis, occur every year. Some people even can not distinguish Taxus baccata (Taxaceae) from Pinaceae species such as Abies alba or Picea abies. Herbal drugs which are on the market can also be victims of botanical confusions, as exemplified by the Chinese plant Aristolochia fangchi (Aristolochiaceae). Microscopic analysis enables to detect very quickly falsifications of herbal medicines and some examples will be shown. TLC is also an important technique but the sensitivity is low. Hyphenated techniques such as LC/MS and LC/NMR are appropriate tools for the rapid identification of contaminants such as pyrrolizidine alkaloids which are hepatotoxic, anacardic acids which are strong allergens and many other classes of toxic plant constituants. Microcapillary NMR, due to its high sensitivity, will play a more important role in the future. The above mentioned technique can also be applied to the standardisation of herbal drugs. Article available at Introduction: The identification of drug impurities, metabolites and degradation products forms a critical part of the drug discovery and development processes. More recently the analysis of biological fluids for changes in endogenous components concentrations, Metabonomics, has become an important part of the systems biology approach to mechanistic biology. The analysis of pharmaceutical products biological fluids and natural products requires high-resolution separation techniques and mass spectrometry to correctly profile, characterize and identify the components. Aim: The purpose of our work was to demonstrate the application of high resolution chromatography employing sub 2 mm particles and elevated flow rates combined with high speed MS and accurate mass MS/MS for the analysis of pharmaceutical products and biological fluids. Methods: Drug metabolites were obtained from development DMPK studies, urine and plasma samples were obtained from safety assessment studies and epidemiological studies. The samples were analysed using a Ultra Performance LC with 5 or 10 cm columns packed with 1.7 mm porous hydrid silica C18 material. The columns were eluted under gradient condition and eluent analysed by tandem quadrupole or QT of MS/MS. Results: The data generated showed that by using the sub 2 mm material the chromatographic resolution could be improved by a factor of 3 and the sensitivity by a factor of up to 8. As the LC flow rate is significantly increased with these particles the analysis time could also be significantly reduced. In the data presented we will some the analysis of a natural product with a LC/MS chromatogram with a peak capacity of 1024 over 1 hr and urine metabonomics analysis using a 10-minute separation with a peak capacity of 700. Conclusion: The use of sub 2 mm particle LC provides faster separations, higher resolution, improved spectral quality and increased sensitivity. These high resolution separations are ideal for the challenging applications of metabolite ID, metabonomics and natural products analysis. Background: The punishable blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) for driving in Sweden is 0.20 ‰ (mg/g) and there is also a more serious offence (aggravated drunk driving) at 1.0 ‰ or more. For drugs other than alcohol, a zero-limit law was introduced in 1999, which meant that a person was charged and prosecuted if a controlled substance was unequivocally identified in a specimen of blood. An exception was made if the scheduled substance was a medicinal drug and was being used in accordance with a physician's ordination. Aim: To give a broad overview of the development and present status of alcohol, drugs and driving in Sweden. The demographics of offenders and the spectrum of drugs used and abused by motorists as well as recidivism rates are reported. The occurrence of alcohol and/or drugs in blood samples from drivers killed in road-traffic crashes was also investigated. Methods: Aliquots of peripheral venous blood were analyzed by well established methods; HS-GC (ethanol), GC-NP detector (pharmaceuticals) and GC-MS and LC-MS (illicit drugs). The results were entered into a forensic toxicology database (TOXBASE), which was the starting point for this epidemiological study. Results: The number of blood samples sent by the police for toxicological analysis has now increased 14-fold after the zero-limit law came onto force. In 80-85% of cases the blood samples contain one or more banned substance either alone or together with ethanol. The offenders were predominantly men (85-95%) and their age depended on the drug identified in blood. S1-3 Ann Toxicol Anal. 2009; 21(S1) Abstracts the addict to switch from an occasional user to a compulsive user seeking the drug at all cost. The presentation will aim at giving both basic and advanced knowledge in the understanding of the neural and chemical substrates of addiction, focusing on the major classes of drugs of abuse. Abstract not available.