Objective: New psychoactive substance use (NPS) is a reality in France, including among drivers. This work aims (i) to report the pharmaceutical design of NPS detected in oral fluid (OF) from drivers initially screened for drugs around a music festival in 2019 and (ii) to compare obtained results with those of a previous similar study carried out in 2017 in the same situation (and the same music festival) and according to the same methodology.
Methods: OF specimens were recovered from the user devices of the salivary immunochemical tests used by the police during the controls carried out at the entering and leaving the festival. These OF were analyzed using liquid chromatography coupled with tandem mass spectrometry and high-resolution mass spectrometry methods using mass spectra libraries of approximately 1700 substances, including (in 2020) more than 650 NPS and metabolites.
Results: NPS was detected in 14 out of the 265 collected OF specimens. Ten NPS were identified (number of identification): APINACA (1), AB-Chminaca (1), 5F-AMB (1), 5F-PB-22 (5), 2C-D (1), methoxetamine (2), ketamine (1), x-CMC (1), 4-MEC (2), ethylone (2). The prevalence of NPS detection in OF (5.2%) is in the same order as the observed one in 2017 (6.8%), but these results are marked by the majority and increasing proportion of synthetic cannabinoids (47% of identified NPS in 2019 vs. 25% in 2017), an increase also in the proportion of cathinone derivatives (29% in 2019 vs. 6% in 2017), and a decrease in cyclohexanones (17% in 2019 vs. 43% in 2017).
Conclusion: These pharmaceutical design trends (2019 vs. 2017) observed in a population of drivers around a music festival seem to reflect those that can be seen in more general populations in France, with probably a rise in the consumption of synthetic cannabinoids.
Keywords: New psychoactive substances, drivers, music festival, oral fluid, LC-HRMS, LC-MS/MS.
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