Note: Lab results from drugsdata.org show some cocaine samples turning orange or pink with Marquis reagent even when no amphetamines are present. We are not sure why these false positives are happening. It could be due to a lesser-known cut, or a left-over chemical during the extraction process. We are currently working with our partner organizations to discover the cause and develop new testing protocol.
Cocaine can be adulterated or “cut” with many substances, including amphetamines, cathinones (“bath salts”) and the veterinary de-worming medication, levamisole. (Levamisole is added to cocaine because it doesn’t “cook out” when making crack, giving the illusion the cocaine is more pure.)
Many people who enjoy cocaine do not want to consume amphetamines or cathinones, and nobody wants to consume levamisole. Levamisole is toxic to the body’s immune system and can cause “agranulocytosis” or the lowering of the number of white blood cells necessary to fight diseases. People who use levamisole-laced cocaine can become more susceptible to viruses and bacteria. Many long-term cocaine users have died from otherwise treatable illnesses as a result of levamisole inhibiting their immune system.
Start with Morris Reagent to identify cocaine
Morris reagent is a new reagent we recently developed that can identify the presence of cocaine in a drug sample better than any other reagent, even when the cocaine is cut. Morris reagent consists of two liquids (bottle A and bottle B). When combined onto a small drug sample and stirred, Morris reagent produces a unique blue color in the presence of cocaine, like the Jolly Rancher hard candy.
On a white ceramic plate, put a drop of the pink liquid (bottle A) onto a small amount of your sample.
Next put a drop of the clear liquid (bottle B) on top of the exact same sample.
Stir the mixture with a toothpick or the sharp point of a knife for 20-30 seconds.
After stirring, compare the resulting color with the images below.
Note: After putting the first drop (bottle A) onto your sample, you may see blue specks appear. Ignore these. Many substances turn blue after the first drop. It’s only after putting the second drop on from the bottle B and stirring for 20-30 seconds that you will see the correct, final color.
Next Use Marquis and Liebermann
After using Morris reagent to identify the presence of cocaine in your sample, next use Marquis reagent to test cocaine for amphetamines or cathinones. Marquis will not react with cocaine (or levamisole), but it will turn orange in the presence of amphetamine or methamphetamine, and yellow in the presence of most cathinones. (See the color chart below.)
After that, use Liebermann reagent to test for levamisole. Liebermann turns yellow in the presence of pure cocaine, and will turn reddish-orange in the presence of levamisole. Amphetamines with also turn orange with Liebermann, but it is a lighter orange than the reddish-orange with levamisole. (See the color chart below.)
Note: There is no need to stir Marquis or Liebermann reagents. Just place a drop onto a small amount of the drug sample and the color change will happen immediately. (Each reagent requires its own bit of powder. Do not combine the reagents together on the same drug sample.)
Basic Steps for Marquis and Liebermann
The Color Chart
Use this color chart to compare the results.
General Testing Instructions
IMPORTANT: Never have more than one reagent bottle open at a time. If you mix up the caps and put the wrong cap on the wrong reagent bottle, this may cross-contaminate the reagents and ruin them. Be sure to perform the tests in a well-lit location.
- Scrape a tiny bit of your pill or powder onto a white ceramic plate.
- Take the reagent bottle out of the plastic safety container.
- Remove the cap and turn the bottle upside-down a couple inches over the powder.
- Squeeze one drop out of the bottle onto the powder.
- Be careful to not let the dropper bottle touch your powder or you will contaminate the kit and ruin the entire bottle.
- Replace the cap.
- Observe the color change right away.
- Use the color chart to evaluate your test.
Storage and Handling Instructions:
The DanceSafe reagents are primarily sulfuric acid with other potentially dangerous chemicals and are strong enough to burn skin and clothing. Keep out of eyes and mouth. Wear latex gloves when handling the bottle and cap. If you get some on you, then wash quickly with soap and water. Wash testing surfaces with soap and water as well. Dispose of any unwanted reagent down the sink with running water and baking soda. Store all testing kits in a cold, dark place (like your refrigerator) between uses.
NOTE: DanceSafe Reagents can only determine the PRESENCE, not QUANTITY of particular substances.
A positive or negative reaction for a substance does not indicate that a drug is safe. No drug use is 100% safe.