New Test Can Detect Drug Use from Fingerprints.

Watch what you touch now…

1 Proton 1 Electron

Image Credit – Frettie Image Credit – Frettie

A research team led by the University of Surry has devised a method of detecting drug usage using a single fingerprint. This non-invasive test can be primarily deployed for detecting cocaine usage, and can distinguish whether the drug has been ingested, or just touched. The test will revolutionise law enforcement, as results can be obtained faster, and without the possibility of falsified results.

Fingerprint tests have been employed before, but have only been able to prove that someone has touched the substance. However, Dr Melanie Bailie and her team have devised a method using mass spectrometry to look for chemicals that are only excreted by the skin whilst metabolising cocaine.

She said, “When someone has taken cocaine, they excrete traces of benzoylecgonine and methylecgonine as they metabolise the drug, and these chemical indicators are present in fingerprint residue.”

Law enforcement agencies are somewhat restricted by current…

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