Scientists from the University of Lincoln’s Forensic Chemistry Research Group have published a new study in collaboration with Brazilian police which could help tackle the misidentification of 25I-NBOH, a potent psychedelic substance, when processed by routine analyses.

Dr Ana Andrade, visiting post-doctorate from the Policia Civil do Distrito Federal, and Dr Mathieu Elie from the School of Chemistry have been working with several forensic Brazilian laboratories to address the issue.

25I-NBOH is a psychedelic phenethylamine (amphetamine-type of compound) and part of the latest wave of Novel Psychoactive Substances (NPS) which were controlled last year in the UK under the new Psychoactive Substances Act 2016. It is believed to be widely abused and has been found on blotter paper similarly to LSD.

Dr Mathieu Elie explained: “Due to the fragile nature of the molecule, this compound is rapidly degraded by heat and transformed into another drug when routinely analysed by recommended approved methods. This has a twofold impact: first, different drugs often fall under different legislation; and secondly, different drugs often require different course of treatment in intoxication cases. What we did was to demonstrate this transformation and proposed an alternative method to prevent misidentification”.

The paper was presented at the international conference of forensic science: InterForensics 2017 in Brasilia (, and won the Best Paper Award.

The paper titled “Preventing misindentification of 25I-NBOH as 2C-I on routine GC-MS analyses”, is now available to read online:

The School of Chemistry was delighted to open its lab doors for members of U3A STEM Group.

The group were welcomed by Professor Ian Scowen, Head of School and Dr Tasnim Munshi, Deputy Head of School. 

Guests were given a tour of the Joseph Banks Laboratories, a £14m redevelopment of a landmark 1930’s art deco style building which houses state-of-the-art research facilities in chemistry, followed by a lecture by Dr Fraser Scott.

You can view photos of the visit below.

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On Tuesday 6th June, the School of Chemistry will host the Salters’ Festival of Chemistry 2017.

The Salters’ Festivals of Chemistry are run in partnership with the Royal Society of Chemistry and are an initiative of the Salters’ Institute. The primary objective of the events are to help promote the appreciation of chemistry and related sciences amongst School children.

Students participating will be part of:

  • Exciting hands-on practical Chemistry challenges in University/College labs
  • Carrying out investigations “like a real Chemist”
  • Team-working and independent problem solving
  • Amazing chemical demonstrations
  • Prize-giving ceremony with prizes for winning schools
  • Fun prizes and certificates for all participants

The Festivals will also be an opportunity for Chemistry teachers;

  • Hear what the Salters’ Institute is doing
  • Come and meet your local RSC Education Co-ordinator
  • A chance to network with like-minded colleagues
  • Participate in CPD opportunities

You can view a gallery of past Festivals online.

Find out more about Salters’ Institute or the Royal Society of Chemistry.