Identification of Synthetic Cannabinoid 5-fluoro-ADB in Human Performance and Postmortem Samples: A Case Series
In recent years, various types of synthetic cannabinoids have become widely distributed and are causing social and health problems throughout many parts of the world. These drugs are considered novel psychoactive substances (NPS) and were created to imitate the cannabimimetic effects similar to Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) through interaction with the CB1 and CB2 receptors of the human endocannabinoid system. This paper reports the detection of the recently identified synthetic cannabinoids and metabolites in both blood and urine matrices and presents both postmortem and human performance cases In Miami, Florida. The paper also correlates the identification of these drugs with observed behavior in human performance cases and post-mortem cases. There is limited information available regarding the confirmation of 5-fluoro-ADB involving fatal poisonings.
Results highlight the need for expanded toxicology testing for synthetic cannabinoids in clinical and forensic specimens especially when characteristic symptoms such as memory impairment in a traffic accident and unresponsive cardio-pulmonary arrest are observed.