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Synthesis, characterisation, detection and quantification of a novel hexyl-substituted synthetic cannabinoid receptor agonist: (S)-N-(1-amino-3,3-dimethyl-1-oxobutan-2-yl)-1-hexyl-1H-indazole-3-carboxamide (ADB-HINACA)

Gilbert, Nicolas and Costello, Andrew and Ellison, Jamie R and Khan, Umer and Knight, Mark and Linnell, Michael J and Ralphs, Robert and Mewis, Ryan E and Sutcliffe, Oliver B (2021) Synthesis, characterisation, detection and quantification of a novel hexyl-substituted synthetic cannabinoid receptor agonist: (S)-N-(1-amino-3,3-dimethyl-1-oxobutan-2-yl)-1-hexyl-1H-indazole-3-carboxamide (ADB-HINACA). Forensic Chemistry. p. 100354. ISSN 2468-1709 (In Press)

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Abstract

Synthetic cannabinoid receptor agonists (SCRAs) are a continually evolving family of illicit drugs, with novel analogues frequently being detected. This paper reports the detection of a new N-hexyl-1H-indazole derivative, ADB-HINACA, within a herbal sample seized by law enforcement for the first time in the United Kingdom. The identity of the compound was confirmed via the synthesis of a pure ADB-HINACA reference standard and direct spectral comparison by 1H NMR and GC-EI-MS analysis. A full analytical profiling of ADB-HINACA by nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR), attenuated total reflection Fourier-transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy and gas chromatography-electron ionisation-mass spectrometry (GC-EI-MS) is reported and shows good concordance between the seized sample and the reference standard. A validated GC-EI-MS method for the routine quantification of the cannabinoid in seized samples (LOD: 1.7 μg/mL, LOQ: 5.8 μg/mL) was also developed and using this method, the seized herbal sample was determined to contain 4.9% w/w ADB-HINACA.

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