Evaluation of N-acetyltaurine as an ethanol marker in human blood.

Luginbühl, Marc Joel; König, Stefan; Schürch, Stefan; Weinmann, Wolfgang (2017). Evaluation of N-acetyltaurine as an ethanol marker in human blood. Alcohol, 65, pp. 11-18. Elsevier 10.1016/j.alcohol.2017.05.007

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To investigate the potential of N-acetyltaurine (NAcT) in blood as a biomarker for alcohol uptake, a previously published LC-MS/MS method for urine was modified to simultaneously detect NAcT and ethyl glucuronide (EtG). The method was applied in a drinking study and by analyzing 147 forensic case samples. In the drinking study, contrary to EtG, NAcT proved to be an endogenous substance, which was present at 22 ± 7 ng/mL (13-31 ng/mL) in the blood after 2 weeks of abstinence. A moderate increase in NAcT to 40 ± 10 ng/mL (27-57 ng/mL) was observed after drinking. Within 24 h, the NAcT concentrations declined to starting concentrations in seven out of eight subjects. Peak EtG concentrations (c¯max) of 445 ± 101 ng/mL (278-662 ng/mL) were reached. While EtG in blood can be used to detect alcohol consumption even if ethanol is already eliminated, some of the maximum NAcT concentrations after a single ethanol dose were in the range of endogenous levels detected prior to the start of drinking in other subjects. In the 147 blood samples, the following concentrations were found: blood alcohol concentration (BAC): 1.22 ± 0.95 g/kg (0-3.46 g/kg); NAcT: 37.8 ± 18.4 ng/mL (12.1-109 ng/mL); EtG: 1149 ± 1121 ng/mL (0-5950 ng/mL). ROC curve analysis for BAC thresholds at 0.8 and 1.6 g/kg were performed for EtG and NAcT. Due to the presence of endogenous NAcT levels resulting in a lower sensitivity and selectivity when compared to EtG, and due to a minor increase in concentration after alcohol uptake, the usefulness of NAcT as an alcohol biomarker in blood is very limited.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

04 Faculty of Medicine > Service Sector > Institute of Legal Medicine > Forensic Chemistry and Toxicology
04 Faculty of Medicine > Service Sector > Institute of Legal Medicine
04 Faculty of Medicine > Service Sector > Institute of Legal Medicine > Management
08 Faculty of Science > Departement of Chemistry and Biochemistry

UniBE Contributor:

Luginbühl, Marc Joel; König, Stefan; Schürch, Stefan and Weinmann, Wolfgang

Subjects:

600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health
500 Science > 570 Life sciences; biology
500 Science > 540 Chemistry

ISSN:

0741-8329

Publisher:

Elsevier

Language:

English

Submitter:

Antoinette Angehrn

Date Deposited:

21 Feb 2018 16:25

Last Modified:

21 Feb 2018 16:25

Publisher DOI:

10.1016/j.alcohol.2017.05.007

PubMed ID:

29084624

Uncontrolled Keywords:

Alcohol abstinence monitoring Blood alcohol Direct alcohol marker Ethyl glucuronide LC–MS/MS N-acetyltaurine

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/108495

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