University of Hertfordshire

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Description

The aims of the 24-month project are: “to monitor, test, profile, and feed back into education and prevention knowledge relating to the types of NPS emerging in Europe, their associated characteristics and potential harms”.

Layman's description

The project has four integrated workstreams (WS). WS1 involves collecting a range of information relating to individuals who have reported using NPSs or died from such use. Recording of such data allows ascertainment of groups exposed to specific NPSs and their associated harms, helping to formulate improved approaches to identification and recording of deaths and ‘near misses’ linked to NPS use. Data from these reports will inform the choice of compounds to be investigated in WS2 and WS3.

WS2 will correlate [RAMAN spectral] data of established drugs of abuse with their biological data generated by WS3, hence developing robust computational models for recognition of characteristic features of NPSs in unknown samples. Models are intended to be implemented in softwares contained in hand-held instruments [Raman spectrometers] to be used in the field (i.e. hospitals, ambulance, border control) to facilitate identification of unknown NPSs. These models will allow prediction of mode of action, properties and potency of NPS according to their likely chemical structure.

WS4 will integrate ‘real-time’ NPS-related data identified with innovative chemical, neurobiological and computational analyses to facilitate the generation of data being used to inform targeted approaches in harm reduction (including deaths) and treatment. The knowledge of such information in the medical/allied health professions will be improved, with focus on the health impact/associated risks of NPS use. This will be achieved by producing a range of resources in several languages, including lectures, online teaching and e-learning resources on the health risks of NPS for use in inter-professional medical, pharmacy, health education and other settings.
StatusFinished
Period1/04/1430/05/16

Funding

  • European Commission: £226,378.00

Activities

Research outputs

ID: 8985643