Purpose: Whatman™ 903 cards represent a valid type of support for collection, storage, and analysis of dried blood spots (DBS). Whatman™ FTA (Flinders Technology Associates) are a type of cards soaked in chemicals that cause denaturation of proteins, while preserving DNA and ensuring the safe handling of DBS; to date, these cards are still rarely employed in forensic toxicology. The aim of this study was to analyze several psychoactive substances on not-dried blood on the two different cards and to compare the qualitative and quantitative results. Methods: Twenty cardiac postmortem blood samples were collected and deposed on Whatman™ 903 and Whatman™ FTA cards. Spots and not-dried blood were analyzed following our validated and previously published liquid chromatography–mass spectrometry methods. Results: We were able to identify: eight drugs of abuse and their metabolites (15 cases), five benzodiazepines and their metabolites (3 cases), six antidepressants (6 cases) and two antipsychotics (3 cases). We observed a perfect qualitative correspondence and a general good quantitative correlation between data obtained from not-dried blood and the two different DBS cards, except for alprazolam, diazepam, desmethyldiazepam, fluoxetine and sertraline, that showed a lower concentration on FTA. Additional experiments suggest that the chemicals, adsorbed on FTA, are not the cause of the loss of signal observed for the substances previously mentioned and that methanol should be preferred as extraction solvent. Conclusions: This study proved that FTA cards are a good and a hazard-free alternative sample storage method for analysis of several psychoactive substances in postmortem blood.
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