-- Robert Preidt
MONDAY, March 31, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Researchers say
they've developed a simple new test that quickly detects the
date-rape drug GHB in drinks.
GHB (gamma-hydroxybutyric acid), a central nervous system
depressant, is one of the most commonly used date-rape drugs.
Spiking drinks with GHB, which is odorless and colorless,
incapacitates victims, making them vulnerable to sexual
When the fluorescent compound is mixed with a sample of drink
containing GHB, the mixture changes color in less than 30 seconds,
according to the research team at the National University of
The researchers tested a number of fluorescent compounds with a
wide range of GHB concentrations and identified one called GHB
Orange that changes color when mixed with the date-rape drug.
The team then tested the ability of GHB Orange to detect GHB in
different types of alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks and found
that it was effective, according to the study, published recently
in the journal
The color change was readily apparent in clear and light-colored
drinks such as water or vodka, but additional lighting was needed
to detect the change in darker drinks such as cola and whiskey, the
The U.S. Office on Women's Health has more about
date rape drugs.
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