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Fucci N. 
“Unusual adulterants in cocaine seized on Italian clandestine market”. 
Forensic Sci Int. 2007 Oct 10;172(2-3):e1.
Two unusual compounds, hydroxyzine and levamisole, were identified by GC–MS in a several large shipments of illicit cocaine seized in Rome. Twenty-eight kilograms of cocaine hydrochloridewere confiscated in Rome and the seized materials was analysed by the local forensic laboratory. The drug was packed in blocks of compact white powder. An aliquot of the sample was submitted to a different analytical procedure to establish the percentage of purity of cocaine and the presence of major and minor impurities. The white powder was dissolved in methanol containing internal standard (ethaverine 2 mg/mL) for quantitative analysis. The sample was sonicated for 5 min and 1 mL of the resulting solution was immediately injected in the GC. Another aliquot was solubilized in methanol for qualitative analysis. GC–MS analysis were performed on a model 5890 gas chromatography fitted with a split–splitless injector (270 8C) equipped with a HP 1 capillary column (12 m  0.2 mm i.d.) 0.3 mm film thickness methylsilicone. A linear programme from 70 to 280 8Cat10 8C/min increments with a 5 min final isotherm was chosen. Heliumwas employed as the carrier gas at a column head pressure of 10 psi. The capillary column was connected to a mass analyzer (HP 5971A) operated by electron impact (70 eV electronic impact) in total ionmonitoring (40–500 amu) in order to identify cocaine congeners and quantify cocaine amount in each seizure (cocaine/ethaverine ratios). Compound identification was performed by comparison of the spectrum with a computerized mass spectra library. Quantitative analysis showed the blocks contained 80–90% of cocaine HCl. Moreover, in all cocaine seizures analysed, trace amounts of hydroxyzine and levamisolewere detected. The presence of ecgoninemethyl ester, ecgonine, tropacocaine, norcocaine, cis- and trans- cinnamoyl cocaine and benzoylecgonine were also identified. Hydroxyzine is marketed as an anxiolytic, antihistamine and as a mild tranquilizer. Levamisole is an antibiotic medication used to treat colon cancer and is a synthetic imidazothiazole derivative also employed as an antihelminthic to treat worminfestations in both humans and animals.
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