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Test ID: ZH115

Synthetic Cannabinoids, U

  • CPT Code:
  • LOINC:
  • Specimen Type: Random unpreserved urine
  • Frequency: Setup: Tues, Thurs: Analytic time : 3 days
  • Instructions: 10mLs random unpreserved urine-refrigerated.
  • Text: Synthetic cannabinoids (ie, K2, Spice) were originally designed as research tools to aid in the investigation of the endocannabinoid system due to their ability to bind to cannabinoid type 1 (CB1) and cannabinoid type 2 (CB2) receptors.(1) Often referred to as herbal incense or potpourri, synthetic cannabinoids are gaining in popularity among recreational drug users as an inexpensive and "legal" alternative to marijuana.(2) Synthetic cannabinoids do have some effects common to that of marijuana and its primary psychoactive compound, delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), with a higher degree of intoxication associated with their consumption.(2) Users of synthetic cannabinoids however may demonstrate more serious side effects such as hypertension, hallucinations, tachycardia, sinus bradycardia, chest pain, dysrhythmias,seizures and even death.(3) There are several subclasses of synthetic cannabinoids that are distinguished by their structural elements. The aminoalkylindoles, JWH-018, JWH-073, JWH-200 were some of the first synthetic cannabinoids to be listed as schedule I drugs.(4) The Synthetic Drug Abuse Prevention Act of 2012 further placed 26 additional synthetic cannabinoids into the schedule I category due to their ability to act as cannabimimetic agents.(5) The metabolism of synthetic cannabinoids occurs via cytochrome P450 enzymes and generally includes either hydroxylation and/or dehalogenationwith excretion in the urine as glucuronide conjugates.(1,3,6)
  • Methodology: High Performance Liquid Chromatography-Tandem Mass Spectrometry (LC-MS/MS)


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