Gas Chromatography–Time-of-Flight Mass Spectrometry Utilized As an Effective Weapon Against Illegal Drugs of Abuse
Illegal drug use worldwide is at an all-time high. There is a crucial need for fast and accurate analysis to positively identify suspected drugs in criminal investigations. Gas chromatography combined with time-of-flight mass spectrometry (GC–TOFMS) can be a valuable tool for drug testing in forensic crime laboratories. Method development and GC–TOFMS experimentation was conducted in cooperation with a local crime laboratory. The laboratory testing presented will illustrate highly efficient methods and data developed for crime labs that assist in the battle against illegal drugs. Many drug classes have chemical properties that present particular analytical challenges, such as poor detector response, chemical lability, or poor chromatographic peak shape. This article presents GC–TOFMS methods developed for several major drug classes and chemical functionalities. The major drugs included in the initial method development are methamphetamine, ecstasy, and heroin. Robust and accurate..