vMethod application for forensic toxicology screening


Expand your drug screening capabilities

vMethod applications from SCIEX are designed to help laboratories easily implement challenging new applications and be ready for validation with minimal method development. This vMethod is designed to help you monitor and accurately identify forensic compounds in biological matrices using a single injection, including 130 of the newest and most prevalent NPS on the recreational drug market.

The vMethod application provides a comprehensive solution for new psychoactive substances (NPS) screening, including:

  • Sample preparation procedures for both human whole blood and urine
  • Detailed LC conditions including gradient information, mobile phases, flow rate, injection volume and column used for the separation of the analytes
  • Comprehensive non-targeted MS/MS acquisition method
  • Robust data processing tailored to deliver concise and confident results

Monitor and accurately identify 900 compounds in biological matrices in a single injection

Working closely with expert collaborators worldwide, SCIEX has developed a robust and reliable workflow for screening drugs of abuse and their metabolites in blood and urine. It allows laboratory personnel in forensic laboratories to quickly and easily get up and running, processing samples and getting results, with no need for extensive method development or in-depth training. 

New users of accurate mass spectrometry can easily validate the method and start routine analyses with confident reporting of results thanks to the ease of use of the latest SCIEX OS software.

Straightforward sample preparation

The detailed sample preparation procedures for both human whole blood and urine enable quick and efficient NPS extraction without compromise in analyte recovery.

Optimized LC conditions

The LC separation conditions enabled chromatographic resolution of the majority of the NPS included in the panel, including challenging isobaric and structurally-related species.

Comprehensive MS/MS detection methods

The 2 non-targeted data acquisition methods — data dependent acquisition (DDA) and data independent acquisition (DIA) with SWATH DIA — enable comprehensive and high-quality MS/MS spectra generation, as well as the creation of a digital archive of the NPS present in biological samples at the time of collection.

Robust data processing

The processing method uses stringent confidence criteria for confident analyte identification, including compound fragmentation comparison to library spectra. Targeted data processing is accomplished in SCIEX OS software using the components tab, which includes the name, molecular formula, precursor mass and retention time of each of the 130 NPS included in this panel. This allows datasets to be re-processed when newly identified forensic targets are discovered without the need to re-inject samples.

Forensic toxicology solutions from SCIEX

The vMethod application for forensic toxicology screening is compatible for use with the X500R QTOF system and the ZenoTOF 7600 system, the SCIEX accurate mass systems that uses SCIEX OS software for data acquisition and processing. These systems best use in combination with the forensic high-resolution MS/MS spectral library for confident spectral library matching.

ZenoTOF 7600 system

The ZenoTOF 7600 system provides unique features enhancing MS/MS capabilities, combining the power of the Zeno trap for improved MS/MS sensitivity and EAD as an alternative fragmentation technology providing unique fragments for drug and metabolite characterization.

X500R QTOF system

The X500R QTOF system is the most versatile and easy-to-use accurate mass instrument for routine drug screening. The system can be for high-specificity, targeted quantitation, and non-targeted screening from single sample sets in a high-throughput laboratory environment.

SCIEX OS software

SCIEX OS software is the all-in-one software solution for forensic toxicology screening that lets you acquire, process, analyze data and even generate reports in the same software environment. It enables streamlined data processing of challenging forensic data sets with integrated tools to increase confidence in your results.

Forensic HR-MS/MS spectral library 2.1

Confirm identification of commonly tested drugs and metabolites using the Forensic HR-MS/MS spectral library. With over 1,740 forensic drugs and metabolites commonly tested in forensic samples, this high-resolution library enables fast processing of targeted and non-targeted screening data for accurate compound identification from complex biological samples.

Additional resources that you might like

[Technical note] Characterization and identification of a panel of 130 relevant NPS

The method enabled the determination of the NPS retention times and generation of structural information in the form of fragment-rich TOF MS/MS spectra that can be matched to a spectral library database for confident identification of structurally related NPS isomers. The technical note also demonstrates how previously acquired datasets can be retrospectively analyzed to look for the presence of newly identified NPS without having to re-inject samples.

[Webinar] vMethod for NPS screening

This presentation introduces the scope of the vMethod for NPS screening and summarizes the steps required to successfully implement this comprehensive method in your forensic toxicology laboratory. In addition, it also provides guidelines for confident identification of NPS in biological samples. You will also learn how the flexible data analysis pipeline enables analysis of previously acquired data to look for the presence of newly emerged NPS that were not originally identified in the first analysis.