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HPTLC-MS as a Neoteric Hyphenated Technique for Separation and Forensic Identification of Drugs

DOI: 10.4236/jasmi.2018.81001, PP. 1-15

Keywords: Narcotic Drugs, Psychotropic Substances, HPTLC-MS, Chromatography, Mass Spectroscopy, Hyphenated Techniques, Forensic Science

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Drugs are traditionally been identified on basis of chromatographic-spectroscopic hyphenated techniques in instrumental analysis. Gas chromatography (GC) and Liquid chromatography (LC) hyphenated with mass spectroscopy (MS) i.e. GC-MS and LC-MS give reliable and confirmatory results in drugs identification. In the present work the novel hyphenated technique High Performance Thin Layer Chromatography-Mass Spectroscopy (HPTLC-MS) has been used. This technique provides efficient, quick and simple method for identification and separation of Narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances. The drugs under study are Papaverine, Methadone, Cocaine, Ketamine, Caffeine, Codeine, Diazepam, Thebaine, Heroin, Methamphetamine, Carbamazepine, Morphine, Narcotine and Ephedrine. The present study comprising of sixteen drugs has been carried out on CAMAG HPTLC instrument with automatic sampling. Thin layer chromatography (TLC) plates were developed in various solvent systems, scanned under TLC scanner and the results in terms of Retention Factor (Rf value) and UV spectrum (λmax) are presented in the manuscript. Using hyphenated technique of HPTLC-MS (MS 2020 SHIMADZU) spots of these drugs from TLC plate was lifted with CAMAG TLC-MS interface and confirmed by the mass spectrum of the individual drugs by their m/z values thus delivering fast and accurate confirmatory result on the TLC plate.


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