The development of new psychoactive substances in France

Olivier Roussel, Lauriane Tensorer, Xavier Bouvot, Cyrille Balter, Sandrine Sabini, Michelle Carlin

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3 Citations (Scopus)


If our European neighbours have been involved in the fight against new psychoactive substances (NPS) for several years, the seizures from our police forces have been rare. Only the laboratories of French customs analysed large amounts of NPS. Nevertheless, in the last three years, an increased number of French toxicologists have reported detection of NPS use. On the ground, because of the posed problems, police officers attempt to make it part of their jurisdiction and seize the substances. Thus, from our laboratories, the seizures could bring much information about the NPS phenomenon. From seizures submitted to our laboratory, all were analysed according to standard analytical strategy defined in our quality plan. Between 2013 and 2014, 62 seizures of NPS were analysed in our laboratory: 4 seizures in 2013 and 58 seizures in 2014, showing a sudden increase. Synthetic cannabinoids were the main substances identified (15 different compounds detected), five different phenylethylamines, four different cathinones, two tryptamines, two new benzodiazepines, methoxetamine, methiopropamine, mCPP and dimethylaminoethanol were also found. If the proportion of NPS seizures remains low in comparison with the more “classical” drugs of abuse in our laboratory, the dramatic increase in requests from investigators expresses the expansion of NPS throughout France in all likelihood.
Original languageEnglish
JournalToxicologie Analytique et Clinique
Early online date9 Jul 2016
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 9 Jul 2016


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