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E-Journal of Chemistry
Volume 6 (2009), Issue 2, Pages 377-384

Rapid Color Test Identification System for Screening of Counterfeit Fluoroquinolone

B. K. Singh,1 D. V. Parwate,1 and S. K. Shukla2

1Department of Chemistry, RTM Nagpur University, Nagpur-440033, India
2Central Forensic Science Laboratory, Ramanthapur, Hyderabad-500013, India

Received 9 August 2008; Accepted 10 September 2008

Copyright © 2009 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The protocol of rapid identification system consists of three chemical color reactions; two group tests for fluoroquinolone class and a compound specific test each for norfloxacin, ciprofloxacin, gatifloxacin, ofloxacin, levofloxacin and sparfloxacin. The group color reactions are based on (a) Oxidizing behavior of quinolone and (b) Fluorine functional groups, both of which are characteristic of fluoroquinolone class. The compound specific color reactions are developed taking into consideration unique chemical behavior of each compound. The proposed chemical color tests have high selectivity⁄specificity, are ideal for screening purpose. The color of each test was defined by two standard color systems namely CIE lab and Munsell color. A suspected counterfeit tablet of any of the above mentioned drugs can be identified within 10-15 min using this rapid identification system.