Drug Discov Ther. 2015;9(2):144-146. (DOI: 10.5582/ddt.2015.01029)
The study of forensic toxicology should not be neglected in Japanese universities.
Ishihara K, Yajima D, Abe H, Nagasawa S, Nara A, Iwase H
Forensic toxicology is aimed at identifying the relationship between drugs or poison and the cause of death or crime. In the authors' toxicology laboratory at Chiba University, the authors analyze almost every body for drugs and poisons. A simple inspection kit was used in an attempt to ascertain drug abuse. A mass spectrometer is used to perform highly accurate screening. When a poison is detected, quantitative analyses are required. A recent topic of interest is new psychoactive substances (NPS). Although NPS-related deaths may be decreasing, use of NPS as a cause of death is difficult to ascertain. Forensic institutes have recently begun to perform drug and poison tests on corpses. However, this approach presents several problems, as are discussed here. The hope is that highly accurate analyses of drugs and poisons will be performed throughout the country.