The ongoing drugs probe investigation by NCB ( Narcotics Control Bureau ) is one of the most substantial issues which has shaken the entire nation from the scratch. Across the ages, drugs are considered an illegal substance that is prohibited to be consumed in our country which further states it to be a criminal offense.

An individual can intake different types of drugs and simultaneously the determination of drugs is the most important aspect for the purpose of presenting solid evidence during the investigation purposes to government officials.

As per medical terms, blood and bone marrow are the core specimens that are used for the purpose of testing and research work. The ultimate result following the whole list of norms and prototypes finally drives the medical or forensic toxicology experts to the final conclusion.

This discussion is supposed to be in a bit detailed manner as a lot of experts have concluded this fact after several investigations and results that bones and bone marrow contain a large amount of drug traces as compared to the other parts or other skeletal remains of the body.

Let’s get started!

Physiological Characteristics of Bone Marrow

Physiological characteristics of bone marrow

The study regarding the anatomy of the bones and the bone marrow is the basic step to further focus on the drug testing phenomenon. According to medical terms, bone marrow is classified as a delicate tissue that is found in the inner crates of the bones and is responsible for creating distinct types of blood cells, i.e, red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets for the process of proper blood circulation in the human bodies.

The red blood cell is accounted for carrying oxygen from the lungs to the other parts of the body whereas the white blood cells isolate foreign pathogens entering the body alongside platelets responsible for the purpose of blood clotting. All these cells are the core elements available in the bone marrow.

Now we know that there are two types of bone marrow which are known as red bone marrow and yellow bone marrow which are experts in performing their own set of important functions. As said earlier the red blood cells facilitate the flow of blood so red bone marrow aids them along with white blood cells and platelets.

Moreover, on the other end, the yellow bone marrow is well-known for supporting a wide range of blood vessels and fat cells.

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Physiological Characteristics of Bones

Bones are considered one of the most strenuous forms of vascularized tissue that undergo constant change due to sudden and inappropriate changing weather conditions but still play a major role in the homeostasis phenomenon. The porous system which constitutes the bones are known as hydroxyapatite and is accumulated with a large number of minerals hereby known as mineral constituents.

How Location of Bones and Bone Marrow Help Out in Determination of Drug Testing?

The contact of drugs with the bones and the bone marrow is solely based on the anatomical area of the bones correlating with the flow of blood within the body. In most cases, drugs are effortlessly accessible from the most essential bones of the body such as femur bones, ribs, vertebrae, etc. because these are strong specimen bones that remain in existence for a longer period of time.

Drug testing through bone marrow

Method of Analysis

If the bone is collected in the form of liquid then in such cases it’s diluted with water or buffer along with the macerated mixture which further allows the examiners to extract the drugs along with the remaining dilute substances. It may be difficult to extract the drug traces from bone during certain cases as the bone is made up of a high amount of fat.

This can be solved by treating the extracts of the dried solvents along with the hexane or ethanol in the ratio of 7:2 along with a little amount of water in the solution. Proceeding toward the end the hexane layer gets removed and eventually, drugs can be extracted from the remaining fraction of the ethanol.

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Recent Advancements

As per the recent analysis as compared to the old times now different types of drugs such as amphetamines, morphine and a huge volume of benzodiazepines have been found to be detected in the bones and the bone marrow.

Although still there are some heroin metabolites such as 6-acetyl morphine which are not detected during the drug detection cases. Well, the studies also state that the drugs remain within the bones and bone marrow for a longer period of time as compared to the parts of the body.

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Final Words

Well, earlier during the investigation cases bones and bone marrow were not counted as the major specimens for investigation purposes but now due to the advancement in educational research, these have gathered a huge amount of attention stating them to be the most vital specimen for tracing the drugs in the human bodies.

It’s also contended that the proper liberation of the drugs either to the bones or the bone marrow is an unwanted and strident lethargic distribution through the pathway of the blood circulation in the body of living organisms.

These drugs are highly destructive and considerably target individuals who are suffering from bone-related diseases such as osteoporosis, and rheumatoid arthritis at a fast rate which leads to harmful consequences in the future.

contributors (Forensic Yard)

‘By Damini Shaw’

Damini is a final year student and is currently pursuing B.Sc (H) Forensic Science from Sgt University, Gurugram-Haryana, and is an aspiring writer who believes to twist the aspects of content writing with the use of creativity and imagination. She has also worked as a ‘Trainee Intern’ in CFSL, ( Junga ) which is located in Himachal Pradesh.

Categories: Toxicology


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