skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 188963 Find in a Library
Title: Determination of Drug Levels in Two Species of Necrophagous Coleoptera Reared on Substrates Containing Morphine
Journal: Journal of Forensic Sciences  Volume:46  Issue:3  Dated:May 2001  Pages:600-603
Author(s): Benoit Bourel Ph.D.; Gilles Tournel M.D.; Valery Hedouin M.D.; M. Lee Goff Ph.D.; Didier Gosset M.D.
Date Published: May 2001
Page Count: 4
Type: Report (Technical)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study demonstrates the potential for use of necrophagous Coleoptera, as well as Diptera larvae, as alternate specimens for toxicological analyses.
Abstract: Two species of necrophagous Coleoptera -- Dermestes frischi (Dermestidae) and Thanatophilus sinuatus (Silphidae) -- were reared on substrates containing different amounts of morphine. Colonies of D. frischi were reared on rabbit carcasses which had been given 10, 20, and 40 mg/h of morphine hydrochloride via ear artery perfusion over a 3-hour period prior to death. A fourth rabbit served as a control. T. sinuatus was reared on minced beef spiked with morphine hydrochloride to give concentrations of 1,000, 2,500, 5,000, and 10,000 ng/g and one control colony. These dosages were calculated to create tissue concentrations of morphine similar to those encountered in human deaths resulting from morphine overdose. Larvae, pupae, and adults (except for T. sinuatus) were analyzed for morphine content. All developmental stages of D. frischi were positive for morphine and concentrations correlated with cadaveric concentrations during larval stages and to a lesser extent in the adult stage. For T. sinuatus, the best correlations were found in second and third instar larvae. The study demonstrates the potential for use of necrophagous Coleoptera, as well as Diptera larvae, as alternate specimens for toxicological analyses. Figures, tables, references
Main Term(s): Police
Index Term(s): Controlled Substances; Criminal investigation; Criminalistics; Drug analysis; Drug research; Forensic sciences; Poisons and poison analysis; Scientific techniques; Testing and measurement
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.