Occasional tokers and functioning cokeheads beware. The latest in narc technology will now come in the form of a device that can tell if you're stoned just by your fingerprints. In minutes!
The method is being developed by researchers at Intelligent Fingerprinting, led by one Paul Yates. They found that the by-products of your drug of choice are secreted in your sweat, which then get built up on your fingertips. All that's left, then, is to detect the stuff:
The device applies gold nanoparticles coated with antibodies to a fingerprint. The antibodies stick to antigens on specific metabolites in the fingerprint. Fluorescent dyes attached to the antibodies will highlight the presence of any metabolites. The technique was first used to detect nicotine, but now works on a range of drugs, including cocaine, methadone and cannabis.
This could potentially revolutionise DUI tests, as current methods are still pretty invasive and hilarious. There are many solutions here for those of you who are worried, though: you can, like, not smoke crack and stuff; you can choose not to drive if you did happen to smoke crack (not judging); or you can try your best not to sweat when the cops catch you. [New Scientist via Geekosystem]