Drug testing is an important part of assessing a person’s fitness for activities such as employment, health care eligibility, and even recreational sports competitions. One of the latest innovations in drug testing technology is fingerprint drug testing. This scientific breakthrough leverages our bodies’ unique individual variation to provide accurate results quickly and reliably. In this blog post, we’ll explore all the ways that fingerprint drug tests can revolutionize employee onboarding and compliance monitoring while providing law enforcement with powerful tools for tackling addiction issues. Whether you’re looking for a comprehensive overview of how it works or considering its practical applications in your organization, read on to discover everything you need to know about fingerprint drug testing!
A breakthrough in drug testing has been made in 2020 as researchers from the University of Surrey published a study showing how cocaine can be detected on human skin with an experimental fingerprint detection method. This test is capable of discerning whether someone had only touched or actually taken this class A substance—a distinction that could change legal outcomes for those being accused of offenses such as ‘drug driving’. Excitingly, too, the process does not involve any painful sampling techniques; using high-resolution mass spectrometry alone gives accurate results from just one fingerprint sample!
A successful, commercially available fingerprint drug screening system is already available for point-of-care use from Intelligent Fingerprinting, which also provides a fingerprint-based laboratory confirmation service that uses Liquid Chromatography Mass Spectrometry methods. This system uses lateral flow assay technology and fluorescence-labeled antibodies to selectively detect specific drugs or their metabolites in eccrine sweat collected from fingerprints.
A collaborative effort between experts from the University of Surrey, Forensic Science Ireland, the National Physical Laboratory, and Intelligent Fingerprinting aimed to uncover how traces of cocaine can be detected in fingerprints. The team collected samples by asking a group of rehab patients who had admitted drug use within 24 hours prior and an additional set after washing their hands with soap and water for comparison purposes. Moreover, matching sample collection procedures were used on non-users as well.
Scientists uncovered an extraordinary phenomenon: a biochemical marker that can distinguish cocaine users from mere handlers! Benzoylecgonine, which the body produces when coca is consumed, was absent in drug non-users – even if they had handled it. Such an amazing discovery could revolutionize how we identify and help those who struggle with addiction.
University of Surrey. (2020, February 6). Experimental fingerprint test can distinguish between those who have taken or handled cocaine. ScienceDaily. Retrieved February 1, 2023 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/02/200206080453.htm