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Detection of Brodifacoum and other Rodenticides in Drug Mixtures using Thermal Desorption Direct Analysis in Real Time Mass Spectrometry (TD-DART-MS)



Elizabeth L. Robinson, Edward R. Sisco


In recent months, there has been increased reporting of seized drug and toxicology cases containing rodenticides, or superwarfarins, the active ingredient in rat and rodent poisons. While brodifacoum has been the most commonly encountered compound, several other compounds exist and could also be mixed into the drug supply. Seeing as the rodenticides are not scheduled substances, they are not commonly screened for in seized drug analysis. However, as the prevalence of these compounds in the drug supply increases, laboratories are being asked to look for their presence more frequently. This work aims to provide a method for the rapid and simultaneous detection of rodenticides and drugs using thermal desorption direct analysis in real time mass spectrometry (TD-DART-MS). Through this study, TD-DART-MS was found to have tens of nanograms sensitivity for these compounds and can detect them at less than 1 % by weight in mixtures with AB-FUBINACA, cocaine, heroin, or methamphetamine. Additionally, this work presents an optimized method for detection of these compounds, which allows for the simultaneous detection of drugs and rodenticides in a single analysis, providing drug chemists with a tool for rapid identification of these compounds for forensic or public health purposes.
Journal of Forensic Sciences


Rodenticides, DART-MS, Drug Analysis
Created November 21, 2018, Updated April 23, 2019