This course serves as an introduction to the basic
principles of forensic toxicology. This
course emphasizes the common drugs/poisons that are encountered by a practicing
forensic toxicologist and the approach to determining their medico-legal role
in establishing the cause of death and disease.
Topics include the pharmacology and pharmacokinetics of drugs,
impairment versus intoxication, and the interpretation of drug effect in the
criminal court setting. The science of
ethanol and drugs of abuse, along with other important agents (sports doping
drugs, therapeutic drugs, CO etc.), will be discussed as they relate to
toxicology. An introduction to the basic
applied methods of forensic toxicology is also presented including biological
samples, analytical schemes, and some of the special problems commonly
encountered in forensic toxicology.
Lectures, directed readings, and participatory discussions will
introduce the science of forensic toxicology.