Webinar: Identifying Seized Drugs using Mass Spectral Library Searching

Webinar: Identifying Seized Drugs using Mass Spectral Library Searching

This webinar originally occurred on August 7th, 2018
Duration: 1 hour


The rapid spread of designer drugs has introduced significant identification challenges to the forensic science community. This webinar discusses how Mass Spectrometry and the “Hybrid Search” can be used to get a head start on identifying novel opioids.

Mass spectral library searching is an important tool in seized drug identification. It allows an analyst to identify a drug by comparing the experimental spectrum to a reference set of spectra for known compounds. The primary limitation of conventional library search algorithms is the requirement that the mass spectral database contain a representative spectrum of the query compound. This limitation is particularly restrictive when novel molecules are synthesized more rapidly than they can be added to mass spectral libraries.


  • Arun Moorthy | Mathematical Statistician in the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Mass Spectrometry Data Center (MSDC).
  • Gary Mallard | Was at NIST for 31 years, working in fire and chemical kinetics research, chemical kinetics, mass spectrometric and retention index databases.

Funding for this Forensic Technology Center of Excellence webinar has been provided by the National Institute of Justice, Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice.

The opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this webinar are those of the presenter(s) and do not necessarily reflect those of the U.S. Department of Justice.

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