Author: Shahzad Hussain, Zainab Khattak, Sidra Mahmood, Farnaz Malik, Humayun Riaz, Syed Atif Raza and Samiullah Khan

Publishing Date: 2016

E-ISSN: 1011-601X

Volume: 29 Issue: 5


The microbial and chemical analysis of illicit drug samples from different areas of Pakistan i.e. Quetta, Karachi, Lahore and Islamabad was conducted in a cross-sectional study at National Institute of Health, Islamabad. The drug samples were confiscated by Anti Narcotics Force (ANF), Pakistan. Microbial analysis was done by estimating bioburden which revealed the presence of gram negative and positive bacteria’s, fungus, Streptococcus, Staphylococcus species. Trypton soya agar was used for total aerobic count, MacConkey agar for gram-negative bacteria, Sabouraud dextrose agar for fungus and Vogel-Johnson agar for Streptococcus and Staphylococcus species. Colour tests were applied to identify the drug samples. Qualitative and quantitative analysis of suspected samples of Heroin, morphine, cocaine and acetic anhydride was made by employing different chromatographic techniques i.e. Thin-layer chromatography (TLC) and High-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). The samples were found to be adulterated with paracetamol, diazepam and Dextromethorphen. Acetic anhydride was adulterated with hydrochloric acid (HCl). There is lack of information providing structured advice on responses to the consequences of illicit drug adulteration. Robust and rehearsed interventions and communication strategies would provide a basis for response for a wide variety of organisations. Research into the usefulness of media warnings about adulteration of illicit drugs is required.

KEYWORDS: Illicit drugs, heroin, paracetamol, diazepam and dextromethorphen, acetic Anhydride. TLC, HPLC, Pakistan

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