The spread of performance and image enhancing drugs (PIEDs) often requires foren-sic toxicology laboratories to identify unknown compounds without reference stan-dards. We characterized the PIEDs melanotan II and bremelanotide, not legallymarketed, in eight unknown samples confiscated by police together with anabolicsteroids, hormone modulators, sexual enhancers and stimulants, intended for theblack market of bodybuilders, using liquid chromatography–high resolution/highaccuracy Orbitrap mass spectrometry (LC-HRMS). The characterization was carriedout by the accurate mass measurements of MH+ionic species, the study of theirisotopic patterns and the associated relative isotopic abundance (RIA) values, as wellas the accurate mass measurements of collision-induced product ions obtained infragmentation experiments. LC-HRMS confirmed itself as a powerful analytical toolto elucidate the elemental composition and structural characteristics of unknowncompounds.
- melanotan II