The principal emphasis in Dr. Huffman’s research groups is on the syntheses of analogues and metabolites of delta-9-tetrahydrocannininol THC, the principal active component of marijuana.
The long term goals of this research are two-fold and include potential development of new pharmaceutical products…used in drug testing and THC analogues show promise for the treatment of nausea, glaucoma and as appetite stimulants.
This sounds like a valuable pharmaceutical discovery for the treatment of a bevy of symptoms. This discovery is reminiscent of intended uses for cocaine and heroin as medicines in the nineteenth century. Unfortunately, much like heroin and cocaine, misuse, abuse and addiction have accompanied Dr. Huffman’s JHW-018 and JWH-073. Savvy chemists with an entrepreneurial streak have taken advantage of Dr. Huffman’s discoveries. As a result of this innovation, an unregulated, synthetic cannabinoid went mainstream. Obtaining K2/Spice, Sence, Black Mamba, Yucatan Gold, Fake Weed, Skunk, Genie, Bliss… remains relatively easy. Unfortunately, many websites, magazines, and head shops continue to promote the drug as a legal and safe high. Spice, and its derivations, is marketed as safe, legal, herbal blends offering an alternative to marijuana. Contrary to popular belief, the plant/herbal mixture has virtually nothing to do with the psychoactive effects. The “herb” is merely a conduit.
Unlike “organic” marijuana, the intoxicating chemicals found in synthetic marijuana, or K2/Spice, is a manufactured chemical, not inherent to a plant. The accepted theory is that producers of K2/Spice purchase cheap cannabinoids from Chinese-based labs. These cannabinoids are relatively inexpensive and easily manipulated. The chemicals are dissolved into a solvent and sprayed onto a plant or “herbal mixture.” Once the solvent evaporates it is packaged as an herbal mixture or incense. For all intents, K2/Spice could be sprayed on a variety of plant material; the organic catalyst is virtually meaningless. In 2009 a German laboratory conducted research on a 0.3 gram sample of synthetic marijuana. Results indicated that when smoked, the mixture produced psychotropic effects lasting 5-6 hours. Another derivative, HU-210, can be up to 100 times more potent than THC. Additionally, many other compounds within the same sample were not readily identifiable.
Although K2 was placed on Schedule 1 of the CSA by the Federal Register in March 2011, it remains easily accessible and highly toxic. Derivations of the drug are numerous. Recent reports indicate that labs are becoming increasingly proficient at altering existing and creating new compounds. We shouldn’t be surprised that, like other illicit drugs, the chemical components of K2 are virtually infinite. Legitimate science struggles to outpace clandestine production. Until recently, testing for K2 was difficult to find and extremely expensive. Testing was only available from specialized laboratories and took considerable time to process. The need for a rapid onsite urine test was apparent. In response, Express Diagnostics Int’l (EDI) now offers one of the first rapid onsite urine dip tests that will detect both JHW-018 and JWH-073 at 50 ng/mL.
The DrugCheck® K2/Spice Urine Dip Test is the first in a line of new products being developed for synthetic marijuana testing. EDI will roll out the K2/Spice test in dip cup format in March, single dip and cassettes are available now.
This new product line is one more addition to a consistently growing catalog of innovative DrugCheck testing products. Call customer service 888-466-8433 for details or learn more at www.drugcheck.com.