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Journal Article


Holm NB, Pedersen AJ, Dalsgaard PW, Linnet K. Drug Test. Anal. 2014; 7(3): 199-206.


Section of Forensic Chemistry, Department of Forensic Medicine, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Frederik V's Vej 11, 3, DK-2100, Denmark.


(Copyright © 2014, John Wiley and Sons)






New types of synthetic cannabinoid designer drugs are constantly introduced to the illicit drug market to circumvent legislation. Recently, N-​(1-Adamant​yl)-​1-​(5-​fluoropentyl)-​1H-​indazole-​3-​carboxamide (5F-AKB-48), also known as 5F-APINACA, was identified as an adulterant in herbal products. This compound deviates from earlier JHW-type synthetic cannabinoids by having an indazole ring connected to an adamantyl group via a carboxamide linkage. Synthetic cannabinoids are completely metabolized, and identification of the metabolites is thus crucial when using urine as the sample matrix. Using an authentic urine sample and high-resolution accurate-mass Fourier transform Orbitrap mass spectrometry, we identified 16 phase-I metabolites of 5F-AKB-48. The modifications included mono-, di-, and trihydroxylation on the adamantyl ring alone or in combination with hydroxylation on the N-fluoropentylindazole moiety, dealkylation of the N-fluoropentyl side chain, and oxidative loss of fluorine as well as combinations thereof. The results were compared to human liver microsomal (HLM) incubations, which predominantly showed time-dependent formation of mono-, di-, and trihydroxylated metabolites having the hydroxyl groups on the adamantyl ring. The results presented here may be used to select metabolites specific of 5F-AKB-48 for use in clinical and forensic screening. Copyright © 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Language: en


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