Live Updates: COVID-19 Cases
  • World 18,802,282
    World
    Confirmed: 18,802,282
    Active: 6,118,587
    Recovered: 11,977,252
    Death: 706,443
  • USA 4,924,619
    USA
    Confirmed: 4,924,619
    Active: 2,280,280
    Recovered: 2,483,849
    Death: 160,490
  • Brazil 2,808,076
    Brazil
    Confirmed: 2,808,076
    Active: 741,213
    Recovered: 1,970,767
    Death: 96,096
  • India 1,958,592
    India
    Confirmed: 1,958,592
    Active: 619,342
    Recovered: 1,298,528
    Death: 40,722
  • Russia 866,627
    Russia
    Confirmed: 866,627
    Active: 183,111
    Recovered: 669,026
    Death: 14,490
  • South Africa 521,318
    South Africa
    Confirmed: 521,318
    Active: 148,683
    Recovered: 363,751
    Death: 8,884
  • Mexico 449,961
    Mexico
    Confirmed: 449,961
    Active: 100,838
    Recovered: 300,254
    Death: 48,869
  • Peru 439,890
    Peru
    Confirmed: 439,890
    Active: 117,426
    Recovered: 302,457
    Death: 20,007
  • Chile 362,962
    Chile
    Confirmed: 362,962
    Active: 16,887
    Recovered: 336,330
    Death: 9,745
  • Spain 349,894
    Spain
    Confirmed: 349,894
    Active: 321,396
    Recovered: ?
    Death: 28,498
  • Iran 317,483
    Iran
    Confirmed: 317,483
    Active: 24,749
    Recovered: 274,932
    Death: 17,802
  • UK 307,184
    UK
    Confirmed: 307,184
    Active: 260,820
    Recovered: ?
    Death: 46,364
  • Saudi Arabia 282,824
    Saudi Arabia
    Confirmed: 282,824
    Active: 34,490
    Recovered: 245,314
    Death: 3,020
  • Pakistan 281,136
    Pakistan
    Confirmed: 281,136
    Active: 20,836
    Recovered: 254,286
    Death: 6,014
  • Italy 248,803
    Italy
    Confirmed: 248,803
    Active: 12,646
    Recovered: 200,976
    Death: 35,181
  • Bangladesh 246,674
    Bangladesh
    Confirmed: 246,674
    Active: 101,657
    Recovered: 141,750
    Death: 3,267
  • Turkey 234,934
    Turkey
    Confirmed: 234,934
    Active: 10,678
    Recovered: 218,491
    Death: 5,765
  • Germany 213,426
    Germany
    Confirmed: 213,426
    Active: 9,486
    Recovered: 194,700
    Death: 9,240
  • France 192,334
    France
    Confirmed: 192,334
    Active: 79,872
    Recovered: 82,166
    Death: 30,296
  • Canada 117,878
    Canada
    Confirmed: 117,878
    Active: 6,324
    Recovered: 102,596
    Death: 8,958
  • China 84,491
    China
    Confirmed: 84,491
    Active: 810
    Recovered: 79,047
    Death: 4,634
  • Netherlands 56,381
    Netherlands
    Confirmed: 56,381
    Active: 50,228
    Recovered: ?
    Death: 6,153
  • Australia 19,444
    Australia
    Confirmed: 19,444
    Active: 8,398
    Recovered: 10,799
    Death: 247
  • S. Korea 14,456
    S. Korea
    Confirmed: 14,456
    Active: 748
    Recovered: 13,406
    Death: 302
  • New Zealand 1,569
    New Zealand
    Confirmed: 1,569
    Active: 24
    Recovered: 1,523
    Death: 22

Technology to detect cocaine consumption with the help of fingerprint

Author at TechGenyz Science
Fingerprint Detection

As technologies advance further, more ways to help people are coming forward. A recent development in the field of technology will reportedly help us to detect cocaine consumption by examining fingerprints.

Melanie Bailey from the University of Surrey in the UK has found a way to detect a trace of cocaine on human skin. The reports show that one can conduct the test in less than 2 minutes. This seems to be a more effective way than blood tests.

According to Bailey, with the help of this process, now we can easily say either somebody’s touched the drug or they’ve ingested it. This easy method has potential relevance to forensic science as well as toxicology and clinical testing.

While detecting the presence of cocaine on human skin, scientists always look for its primary metabolite, benzoylecgonine on the person’s body. It also reportedly stays as an impurity in some street cocaine. In addition to that, cocaine was found to persist above environmental levels for up to 48 hours after contact. Therefore, it becomes easier to benzoylecgonine in fingerprints of non-drug users after contact with cocaine.

However, there remain chances of washing off the hands after consumption or close contact with cocaine. In Bailey’s words,

Benzoylecgonine in street cocaine actually washes off the fingers.

But she ensures that the consumer of cocaine will continue to excrete the molecule through their sweat. Like this, it becomes easier to test if there is the presence of the metabolite or not.

Conducting the test

Bailey and her team carried out some tests on 26 people who touched cocaine in the past 24 hours. The samples of cocaine had the purity of 99 percent as well as less purity like street samples. They collected samples both before and after washing hands and finally tested them.

Through this test, Bailey and her team wanted to compare these with fingerprint samples taken from a cohort of patients attending a drug rehabilitation clinic, as well as non-drug users. She says,

We show that it is possible to distinguish between contact and ingestion of cocaine from a fingerprint, if (and only if) fingerprints are donated after washing hands.

To gather the samples, the subjects pressed their finger onto a piece of specialized paper for almost 10 seconds. The team then tested the samples with the help of mass spectrometry techniques to detect the presence of cocaine or benzoylecgonine.

Results

The results show that the fingerprinting technique was 95 percent accurate among the 85 participants. The presented data show that it is possible to distinguish between the touch and ingestion of cocaine in a drug testing scenario.

The data sets generated and analyzed during the study are now available on request for further studies. The technique is also commercially available to conduct various drug testing methods. This will surely help the people as well as the government to detect the drug intakes in a much faster way without any blood test.

Career

Subscribe

Have confidential tip to share with us? Get in touch.