Volume 49, Issue 1 (January 2004)

    The Extraction and Infrared Identification of Gamma-Hydroxybutyric Acid (GHB) from Aqueous Solutions

    (Received 19 May 2003; accepted 24 August 2003)

    Published Online: December

    CODEN: JFSOAD

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    Abstract

    The chemical analysis of gamma-hydroxybutyric acid (GHB) in most forensic laboratories is complicated by the highly polar nature of the GHB molecule, which makes it unsuitable for direct analysis by gas chromatography (GC). Consequently, a popular analytical approach is to convert GHB into the corresponding lactone or a derivative compound that is then identified by mass spectrometry employed in conjunction with GC (GC/MS). An alternative approach is presented here where GHB may be isolated as a free acid specie from complex aqueous solutions employing a liquid-liquid extraction technique. This approach can yield a relatively pure residue of GHB that presents an infrared transmission spectrum that is sufficiently distinct for identification purposes. Infrared spectroscopy (IR) is a very popular technique that is available to most crime laboratories. The liquid-liquid extraction behavior of GHB is examined in detail and the uniqueness of the infrared spectrum is discussed.


    Author Information:

    Meyn, AW
    Drug Enforcement Administration, Western Laboratory, San Francisco, CA

    Chappell, JS
    Drug Enforcement Administration, Western Laboratory, San Francisco, CA

    Ngim, KK
    Drug Enforcement Administration, Western Laboratory, San Francisco, CA


    Stock #: JFS2003175

    ISSN: 0022-1198

    DOI: 10.1520/JFS2003175

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    Title The Extraction and Infrared Identification of Gamma-Hydroxybutyric Acid (GHB) from Aqueous Solutions
    Symposium , 0000-00-00
    Committee E30