False Positive Results of Phosphatidylethanol (PEth) Quantitation in Dried Blood Spots (DBS): The Influence of Alcohol Vapors

Anton Bashilov, Sergey Osipenko, Karolina Ikonnikova, Oxana Kovaleva, Boris Izotov, Evgeny Nikolaev, Yury Kostyukevich

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The role of phosphatidylethanol (PEth) as an alcohol consumption marker is increasing in clinical and forensic medicine. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the role of hygiene increased, and it became common practice to use disinfectants almost everywhere. This paper highlights a possible source of false positive results (by the vapors of alcohols during the blood spot drying process) in dried blood spots (DBS) by LC-MS/MS quantitation of PEth. To achieve this, the PEth quantitation method was validated according to FDA guidelines. Additionally, the synthesis of phosphatidyl derivatives by phospholipase D (PLD) in the presence of methanol and 2-propanol vapors during the DBS process was determined. Each PEth-negative sample from a healthy male patient incubated in the presence of ethanol vapor becomes PEth-positive. After 4 h of DBS drying, teetotalers become “moderate drinkers”. It is necessary to avoid using alcohol-containing disinfectants in treatment rooms, where DBS is sampled.

Original languageEnglish
Article number250
JournalSeparations
Volume9
Issue number9
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2022

Keywords

  • alcohol biomarker
  • clinical medicine
  • forensics
  • LC-MS/MS
  • phosphatidylethanol

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