Forensic Sciences Research Volume 6, Issue 3 publishes

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Special Issue: Sharing Clinical and Forensic Toxicology Knowledge in the Era of a Pandemic and Beyond

This special issue includes an editorial, one review, five research articles and two case reports from leading scientists in the field that further the discussion on clinical and forensic toxicology.

Guest Editors: Nikolas P. Lemos

The International Alliance of Clinical and Forensic Toxicologists (IACFT) is a global toxicology collective which strives to offer solutions to the issues and challenges that analytical, clinical and forensic toxicologists face on a daily basis. This special issue of Forensic Sciences Research is a brief representation of the work presented during IACFT’s inaugural meeting in November 2020. The articles included are a small fraction presented at the virtual meeting ; topics include the newest and latest developments on scientific methods, innovations and approaches that have been optimized and validated by scientists whose efforts to expand and share knowledge are represented in the articles. The scientific programme of the inaugural virtual meeting reflected the global clinical and forensic toxicology community’s best efforts in detecting and restricting intoxicants and drugs in many aspects of our daily lives including sport, work, travel, and driving to name just a few, and draws from the expertise of local experts with global reach.

Featured papers in this issue are:

Evidentiary discrepancies in sexual assault casework within the US ( in this review article author Chinyere M. Williams discusses how temperature-controlled conditions for biological evidence of sexual assault cases may be inadequate in the US. Biological specimens collected in drug-facilitated sexual assault (DFSA) casework must be immediately preserved in optimal temperature-controlled temperatures; If biological specimens are not stored at optimal temperatures, forensic toxicologists are likely to interpret values that do not reflect the specimen at time of collection. DFSA investigations and toxicological interpretations would be benefited by the inclusion of temperature-related information with the chain of custody or other included documentation.

Impact of smoking cannabidiol (CBD)-rich marijuana on driving ability ( in this review article authors Tim J. Gelmi, Wolfgang Weinmann, and Matthias Pfäffli describe how no significant impact on driving ability or no effects on vital signs were observed after smoking CBD-rich marijuana. All participants in the research exceeded the Driving Under the Influence of Drugs (DUID) legal limit for THC in blood after smoking CBD-rich marijuana.

Hydroxychloroquine serum concentration in coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) patients: a retrospective study ( a research article by authors Saadi Fatima Zohra and Lachgueur Nassima. Algeria has adopted a therapeutic protocol using hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) as a first-line treatment for patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). The administration of HCQ must be accompanied by appropriate cardiac and therapeutic pharmacological monitoring to avoid side effects and toxicity. This work is a retrospective descriptive study aiming to estimate the HCQ levels of COVID-19 patients.

Gabapentin prevalence: clinical and forensic experience in St. Louis, Missouri, USA in this research article ( a research article by authors Sarah B. Riley, Kelsie Garbutt, Chelsea Crow, T. Scott Isbell, and Anthony J. Scalzo. This study investigates the incidence of gabapentin detected in urine samples collected for clinical drug screening purposes in a local hospital emergency department and in postmortem samples submitted by medical examiners in the St. Louis, MO, USA, metropolitan area. The prevalence of gabapentin and co-detected drugs in both populations is contrasted, compared, and discussed.

Evaluation of a model for providing cost effective, accessible continuing education to the forensic science community ( in this research article author Thomas J. Gluodenis presents a detailed model and its subsequent assessment for the development and optimized delivery of continuing education for the forensic science community.

Other articles published in the issue include:


Sharing clinical and forensic toxicology knowledge in the era of a pandemic and beyond

Nikolas P. Lemos

Original Article

Determination of 3-MeO-PCP in human blood and urine in a fatal intoxication case, with a specific focus on metabolites identification

Nadia Arbouche, Pascal Kintz, Cecile Zagdoun, Laurie Gheddar, Jean-Sébastien Raul, and Alice Ameline

Case Report

Survival after pentobarbitone overdose confirmed through Prescription, Recreational and Illicit Substance Evaluation (PRISE) programme in Australia

Thanjira Jiranantakan, Sarah Ritchie, Cristy Rowe, Jason Tran, Catherine McDonald, Santiago Vazquez, Robin Auld, and Jared Brown

Paroxetine overdose during pregnancy

Selin Acar, Hilal Erol, Elif Keskin Arslan, Nusret Uysal, Barış¸ Karadaş¸, Tijen Kaya Temiz, and Yusuf Cem Kaplan

Guest Editor Biography

Dr Nikolas P. Lemos is professor at Queen Mary University of London, professor at the University of California San Francisco, professor of Saint Louis University, professor of National and Kapodistrian University of Athens and consultant forensic toxicologist and owner of Lemos Toxicology Services. In his career spanning more than two decades, he has co-ordinated the efforts of forensic pathologists, toxicologists, investigators and scientists towards accreditations by the National Association of Medical Examiners (NAME) and the American Board of Forensic Toxicologists (ABFT). He is actively engaged in various national and international professional organizations and is one of the founding members of the International Alliance of Clinical and Forensic Toxicologists, member of the Chartered Society of Forensic Scientists, fellow of the American Board of Forensic Toxicologists, fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry, fellow of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences, and honorary fellow of the Faculty of Forensic and Legal Medicine of the Royal College of Physicians. In 2005, professor Lemos was honoured with a Proclamation of Achievement by the 109th Congress of the USA “for dedicating his life and career to community safety and social awareness”. In 2018, Professor Lemos was elected chair of the Toxicology Section of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences.

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