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Issue 11, 2012
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Determination of benzyl methyl ketone – a commonly used precursor in amphetamine manufacture

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Abstract

1-Phenyl-2-propanone (P-2-P), also known as benzyl methyl ketone (BMK), is a colorless or slightly yellowish liquid. It presents a density similar to that of water as well as a pleasant scent. Even if there are few legitimate uses of BMK such as in the production of the pharmaceutical drug propyl-hexedrine, most frequently BMK is used as an illicit compound for the illegal manufacture of amphetamine. Actually, BMK is identified by classical methods such as gas chromatography, NMR or HPLC. These methods are costly, time-consuming and require the presence of trained operators. It appears obvious that there is an urgent need to develop a new easy and fast method that allows us to detect the presence of traces of BMK. In this work, a new chemically synthesized BMK derivative covalently attached to an immunological carrier was used for producing antibodies against the BMK molecules. A fluorescence polarization-based bioassay was developed by using the produced anti-BMK antibodies and the BMK derivative. The assay exhibits interesting analytical performances with a limit of detection of less than 100 nM and an almost linear response up to 600 nM. Interestingly, the proposed assay could be performed using a customizable portable instrumentation and could be used by non-instructed personnel at custom borders and checkpoints or for quick spot-checks.

Graphical abstract: Determination of benzyl methyl ketone – a commonly used precursor in amphetamine manufacture

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Article information


Submitted
18 Jul 2012
Accepted
21 Aug 2012
First published
22 Aug 2012

Anal. Methods, 2012,4, 3558-3564
Article type
Paper

Determination of benzyl methyl ketone – a commonly used precursor in amphetamine manufacture

S. Di Giovanni, A. Varriale, V. M. Marzullo, G. Ruggiero, M. Staiano, A. Secchi, L. Pierno, A. M. Fiorello and S. D'Auria, Anal. Methods, 2012, 4, 3558
DOI: 10.1039/C2AY25772F

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