Alkaloids in Whole Plant Material: Direct Analysis by Kinetic Energy Spectrometry

Science  03 Mar 1978:
Vol. 199, Issue 4332, pp. 978-980
DOI: 10.1126/science.199.4332.978


A new approach to mixture analysis has been applied to the direct detection of various alkaloids in plant materials. The method requires absolutely no sample treatment. Results are presented for cocaine, morphine, papaverine, coniine, and atropine. The signal-to-background characteristics are superior to those of conventional mass spectrometry. Sensitivity is sufficient to detect and identify between 1 and 10 nanograms of alkaloid.