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Graines de pavot présentes sur du pain anormalement contaminées aux alcaloïdes de l’opium en France

Abstract : Following positive opiate urine testing in employees working in risk positions in a transport company while these subjects claimed to consume nothing other than poppy seed sandwiches, a study was carried out to evaluate the opiates content of poppy seed baguettes and sandwiches as well as the urine, saliva and plasmatic concentrations observed after consumption of these products. Eleven people took part in this study, 6 ingested a whole poppy seed baguette and 9 ate a sandwich. Urinary concentrations for opioids were measured for 48 hours, saliva was analyzed for 10 hours, and plasma levels were measured up to 3.5 hours in one subject. Analyses were performed using liquid chromatography – tandem mass spectrometry. In order to highlight biomarkers of exposure to poppy seeds, urine samples were also analyzed in high resolution mass spectrometry with a metabolomic approach. The concentrations found in poppy seeds for morphine, codeine, thebaine and laudanosine are 530 mg/kg, 80 mg/kg, 300 mg/kg and 10 mg/kg, respectively. Urine concentrations observed after ingestion of the baguette were all positive until 18 h with maximal average concentrations observed at H4 around 2800 ng/mL for total morphine and 700 ng/mL for total codeine. After ingestion of a sandwich, all urines tested positive for morphine until 18 h, with a maximal average at H4 around 1800 ng/mL and 360 ng/mL for total codeine. Some were still positive after 48 h. In plasma, the morphine concentrations were between 18 and 19 ng/mL, corresponding to pharmacologically active concentrations. Noscapine and 6-acetylmorphine are biomarkers for heroin intake, while thebaine and for the first time here, 6-O-desmethylthebaine-glucuronide and O-desmethyl-laudanosine-glucuronide are identified as biomarkers for poppy seeds ingestion. This study showed the presence of morphine and codeine in very large quantities in some commercially available breads. These concentrations, far superior from the European Food Safety Authority's (EFSA) recommendations, can have major consequences particularly from a forensic point of view or in the context of occupational medicine, but also for the health of the most vulnerable populations. The detection of thebaine should be systematically performed when looking for opiates in blood, urine and saliva to facilitate interpretation of the results.
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Submitted on : Wednesday, July 20, 2022 - 2:00:44 PM
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Adeline Knapp-Gisclon, Nicolas Fabresse, Ingrid Fuss-Ohlen, Pamela Dugues, Marie Martin, et al.. Graines de pavot présentes sur du pain anormalement contaminées aux alcaloïdes de l’opium en France. Toxicologie Analytique et Clinique, Elsevier, 2019, 31 (3), pp.135-144. ⟨10.1016/j.toxac.2019.04.003⟩. ⟨hal-02936264⟩



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