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Forensic science international

Demonstration of spread-on peel-off consumer products for sampling surfaces contaminated with pesticides and chemical warfare agent signatures.


PMID 24835029

Abstract

A terrorist attack using toxic chemicals is an international concern. The utility of rubber cement and latex body paint as spray-on/spread-on peel-off collection media for signatures attributable to pesticides and chemical warfare agents from interior building and public transportation surfaces two weeks post-deposition is demonstrated. The efficacy of these media to sample escalator handrail, stainless steel, vinyl upholstery fabric, and wood flooring is demonstrated for two pesticides and eight chemicals related to chemical warfare agents. The chemicals tested are nicotine, parathion, atropine, diisopropyl methylphosphonate, dimethyl methylphosphonate, dipinacolyl methylphosphonate, ethyl methylphosphonic acid, isopropyl methylphosphonic acid, methylphosphonic acid, and thiodiglycol. Amounts of each chemical found are generally greatest when latex body paint is used. Analytes with low volatility and containing an alkaline nitrogen or a sulfur atom (e.g., nicotine and parathion) usually are recovered to a greater extent than the neutral phosphonate diesters and acidic phosphonic acids (e.g., dimethyl methylphosphonate and ethyl methylphosphonic acid).

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