Identification and characterization of α-PVT, α-PBT, and their bromothienyl analogs found in illicit drug products
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Recently, thienyl derivatives of cathinones have appeared on the market as new psychoactive substances (NPS). In this study, identification and characterization of 2-(pyrrolidin-1-yl)-1-(thiophen-2-yl)pentan-1-one (α-PVT), 2-(pyrrolidin-1-yl)-1-(thiophen-2-yl)butan-1-one (α-PBT), and their bromothienyl analogs disclosed in illicit products are described. In our analysis, some analogous compounds of α-PVT, which had a bromine substitution on the thiophene ring, were identified in the samples containing α-PVT; 1-(4-bromothiophen-2-yl)-2-(pyrrolidin-1-yl)pentan-1-one, 1-(5-bromothiophen-2-yl)-2-(pyrrolidin-1-yl)pentan-1-one, and 1-(4,5-dibromothiophen-2-yl)-2-(pyrrolidin-1-yl)pentan-1-one by comparing the analytical data with synthetic reference standards. We also observed 1-(4-bromothiophen-2-yl)-2-(pyrrolidin-1-yl)butan-1-one and 1-(5-bromothiophen-2-yl)-2-(pyrrolidin-1-yl)butan-1-one from a powder product, in which α-PBT was detected. The brominated α-PVTs were also found when overbrominated 1-(thiophen-2-yl)pentan-1-one reacted with pyrrolidine, and they are suspected to be the by-products of α-PVT synthesis. In Japan, cathinone derivatives with a phenyl group as the aromatic ring have been widely controlled by generic scheduling. To escape from such a regulation, analogs with different aromatic groups such as α-PVT and α-PBT appeared on the illicit market of psychoactive compounds. To our knowledge, this is the first report describing identification of α-PBT, and bromothienyl analogs of both α-PVT and α-PBT in illicit drug products. The synthetic method and analytical data shown in this study will be useful for identification of the thienyl derivatives of cathinone analogs.
KeywordsNew cathinone derivatives α-PVT α-PBT Bromothienyl analogs New psychoactive substances (NPS)
This study was partly supported by JSPS KAKENHI Grant No. 25860475 and 15K08834.
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Conflict of interest
There are no financial or other relations that could lead to a conflict of interest.
This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors.
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