Journal of Forensic Toxicology & PharmacologyISSN: 2325-9841

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Research Article, J Forensic Toxicol Pharmacol Vol: 4 Issue: 1

Impact of blood collection tubes on erroneous 1-propanol detection and on forensic ethanol analysis

Vassiliki A Boumba* and Theodore Vougiouklakis
Laboratory of Forensic Medicine and Toxicology, Faculty of Medicine, School of
Health Sciences, University of Ioannina, Greece
Corresponding author : Vassiliki A Boumba
Laboratory of Forensic Medicine and Toxicology, Faculty of Medicine, School of Health Sciences, University of Ioannina, 45110 Ioannina, Greece
E-mail: [email protected]
Received: February 22, 2015 Accepted: March 11, 2015 Published: March 13, 2015
Citation: Boumba VA, Vougiouklakis T (2015) Impact of Blood Collection Tubes on Erroneous 1-Propanol Detection and on Forensic Ethanol Analysis. J Forensic Toxicol Pharmacol 4:1. doi:10.4172/2325-9841.1000134

 

 

 

 

 

Abstract

 Impact of blood collection tubes on erroneous 1-propanol detection and on forensic ethanol analysis

Aim: The present study aims to emphasize the importance of selecting the proper blood collection tubes for the right intended use in order to avoid erroneous results, especially in reference to forensic alcohol analysis. Introduction: Forensic alcohol analysis in blood from living subjects is performed in various situations, such as driving under the influence, is usually related to consumption of alcoholic beverages and often results to the detection of ethanol and/or congener alcohols. Alternatively, ethanol and congeners, such as 1-propanol, can be microbially produced especially in autopsy samples. Methods: Sixty eight blood samples from living subjects, all drivers involved in traffic accidents, contained in different collection tubes, were included in the study. Volatiles were detected with a validated HS-GC-FID method. Samples of normal human blood, spiked with ethanol and/or 1-propanol, dispersed in different tubes were treated and analyzed as the authentic blood samples in order to test the suitability of the collection tubes. Results: Authentic blood samples, contained in certain tubes with separator gel, had high concentrations of “1-propanol”. It was shown that the separator gel released a substance that was recognized as “1-propanol” during analysis by HS-GC-FID at 600C (routine conditions). The erroneous “1-propanol” was separated from authentic 1-propanol during analysis at 580C. Discussion: The separator gel of certain blood collection tubes compromises a source of pre-analytical error that results to erroneous concentrations of 1-propanol. This is unfavorable in forensic cases and can complicate interpretation of the origin (exogenous or microbial) of the detected ethanol.

Keywords: Forensic; Ethanol; 1-propanol; Blood; Interpretation; Pre-analytical error

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