Volume 34, Issue 4 (July 1989)
Studies on the Stability and Detection of Cocaine, Benzoylecgonine, and 11-Nor-Delta-9-Tetrahydrocannabinol-9-Carboxylic Acid in Whole Blood Using Abuscreen® Radioimmunoassay
A study was undertaken to assess the stability and the radioimmunoassay (RIA) detection of cocaine, benzoylecgonine (BZE), and 11-nor-delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol-9-carboxylic acid (THC-COOH) in whole blood while stored in 4 different kinds of blood collection tubes for up to 30 days at refrigeration and room temperatures. At various intervals, the tubes were sampled and analyzed using Abuscreen® RIA. Also, semi-quantitative data derived from RIA analysis of forensic blood specimens were compared with quantitative data acquired using gas chromatography (GC) or GC/mass spectrometry (GC/MS) on the same specimens. RIA and chromatographic studies revealed that BZE and THC-COOH were stable in blood under all conditions studied. Cocaine, however, was found not to be stable in blood, especially when stored at room temperatures. Despite cocaine's instability in blood, RIA was able to detect the presence of cocaine and its breakdown products in blood under all conditions studied.