Archives for posts with tag: nicotine

City birds have been spotted using cigarette butts to make their nests. Birds have long used plants that keep away parasites as anti-pest warfare in their nests, and this may be a modern variation, as nicotine is an effective pesticide.

Read the original paper in Biology Letters.

Archaeologists have found traces of nicotine in flasks from the Late Classic Maya period (600 to 900 AD), which is the first evidence that they used tobacco. The flask is marked with Mayan hieroglyphics reading, “y-otoot ’u-may” (the home of its/his/her tobacco). The researchers used gas chromatography mass spectrometry (GCMS) and liquid chromatography mass spectrometry (LCMS) to find the traces.

Read the abstract in Rapid Communications in Mass Spectrometry.

Fingerprints can help identify you, but they can also spot if you are a smoker, drink coffee, take drugs, or have  handled explosives. Fingerprints are made up of oil and sweat, and these carry traces of drugs, including nicotine and caffeine. Tiny particles with antibodies attached, or hi-tech laboratory techniques, can spot and highlight these traces, or find very small amounts of explosives.

Read the abstract in Angewandte Chemie.

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