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The Synthetic Cannabinoids Phenomenon.

Published on Jan 1, 2017in Current Pharmaceutical Design2.412
· DOI :10.2174/1381612822666160919093450
Laurent Karila20
Estimated H-index: 20
,
Amine Benyamina17
Estimated H-index: 17
+ 2 AuthorsJoël Billieux35
Estimated H-index: 35
(University of Luxembourg)
Sources
Abstract
« Spice » is generally used to describe the diverse types of herbal blends that encompass synthetic cannabinoids on the market. The emergence of smokable herbal products containing synthetic cannabinoids, which mimic the effects of cannabis, appears to become increasingly popular, in the new psychoactive substances landscape. In 2014, the existence of 134 different types of synthetic cannabinoids were reported by the European Union Early Warning System. These drugs are mainly sold online as an alternative to controlled and regulated psychoactive substances. They appear to have a life cycle of about 1-2 years before being replaced by a next wave of products. Legislation controlling these designer drugs has been introduced in many countries with the objective to limit the spread of existing drugs and control potential new analogs. The majority of the synthetic cannabinoids are full agonists at the CB1 receptor and do not contain tobacco or cannabis. They are becoming increasingly popular in adolescents, students and clubbers as an abused substance. Relatively high incidence of adverse effects associated with synthetic cannabinoids use has been documented in the literature. Numerous fatalities linked with their use and abuse have been reported. In this paper, we will review the available data regarding the use and effects of synthetic cannabinoids in humans in order to highlight their impact on public health. To reach this objective, a literature search was performed on two representative databases (Pubmed, Google Scholar), the Erowid Center website (a US non-profit educational organization that provides information about psychoactive plants and chemicals), and various governmental websites. The terms used for the database search were: “synthetic cannabinoids”, “spice”, “new psychoactive substances”, and/or “substance use disorder”, and/or “adverse effects”, and/or “fatalities”. The search was limited to years 2005 to 2016 due to emerging scientific literature at this period Health professionals should take into account that limited scientific evidence is available regarding the effect of synthetic cannabinoids use in humans. It thus urges to launch more systematic epidemiological studies, to develop and validate screening procedures, and to investigate the neurobiological and psychological correlates and risk factors associated to synthetic cannabinoids use and misuse.
  • References (80)
  • Citations (16)
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AbstractContext: Synthetic cannabinoids (SCs) have recently become one of the most abused substances among young population and have caused severe health consequences in our country and worldwide.Objective: The aim of this study was to investigate sociodemographic and dermatological findings in SC addicts.Materials and methods: A total of 136 SC users who applied to our hospital’s Substance Dependence Center outpatient clinic and diagnosed with drug addiction according to DSM-4 criteria between ...
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#1Helge H. O. Müller (University of Oldenburg)H-Index: 8
#2Johannes Kornhuber (FAU: University of Erlangen-Nuremberg)H-Index: 77
Last. Wolfgang Sperling (FAU: University of Erlangen-Nuremberg)H-Index: 23
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Abstract The use of synthetic cannabinoids (spice) is increasing. The number of descriptions of (new) clinical side effects is also increasing. We screened relevant publications for articles about spice with a focus on the clinical manifestations of the use of this drug. Spice creates diffuse psychiatric and somatic effects that are only partially similar to those of natural cannabinoids. Most of the observed effects are related to sympathomimetic-cardiac effects and neuropsychiatric manifestati...
16 CitationsSource
We report on a case of intoxication with a mix of new psychoactive substances. A 38-year-old male was brought to the emergency department (ED) following the ingestion of an unknown drug in a suicide attempt. During the transport, he became progressively more somnolent and unresponsive to painful stimuli. Urine and stomach content were collected on admission to be screened for drugs of abuse and medicinal drugs. After admission, the patient's next of kin presented five small grip seal plastic bag...
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Abstract The use of synthetic cannabinoids and related products has been associated with adverse effects including seizure, acute kidney injury, and sudden death. We report the death of an individual that was associated with the synthetic cannabinoid 5F-AMB. Specimens were extracted via a liquid–liquid extraction at pH 10.2 into hexane:ethyl acetate. Analysis was completed via liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry. For this case report, we briefly describe the extraction and instrumenta...
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Abstract MDMB-CHMICA is a synthetic cannabinoid that appeared on the European drug market in September 2014. This substance was found in Poland in the herbal mixture “Mocarz” (“Strongman”), which caused a large outbreak of intoxications at the beginning of July 2015. This paper describes the circumstances of death and toxicological findings in a fatal intoxication with MDMB-CHMICA (in combination with alcohol). Loss of consciousness and asystole occurred a few minutes after smoking the ‘legal hi...
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#1Liana Fattore (National Research Council)H-Index: 40
Abstract Consumption of synthetic mind-altering compounds, also known as "new psychoactive substances," is increasing globally at an alarming rate. Synthetic cannabinoids (SCs) are among the most commonly used new psychoactive substances. They are usually purchased as marijuana-like drugs, marketed as herbal blends and perceived as risk-free by inexperienced users. Yet, contrary to Δ 9 -tetrahydrocannabinol, SCs may lead to severe health consequences, including anxiety, tachycardia, hallucinatio...
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Synthetic cannabinoids have been found in herbal incense products for the last several years. We report the rapid death of an individual that was certified as synthetic cannabinoid-associated. The autopsy blood specimen was extracted by a liquid-liquid extraction at pH 10.2 into a hexane-ethyl acetate mixture and analyzed by a generalized synthetic cannabinoid LC-MS-MS method. For this case report, we briefly describe the instrumental analysis and extraction methods for the detection of ADB-FUBI...
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#1Sabrina MörklH-Index: 7
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Einleitung: „Mocarz“ ist ein Legal high, das aus getrockneten Pflanzenteilen besteht, die mit synthetischen Cannabinoiden versetzt sind. Zurzeit gibt es nur begrenzte Information uber dessen Toxizitat. Dieser Fallbericht handelt von einer akuten psychotischen Entwicklung im Zusammenhang mit dem Konsum von synthetischen Cannabinoiden. Kasuistik: Wir berichten uber einen 35-jahrigen Patienten mit keiner psychiatrischen und medizinischen Vorgeschichte, der nach Konsum von „Mocarz“, das er uber das ...
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#1Laura M. LabayH-Index: 2
#2James L. CarusoH-Index: 1
Last. Barry K. LoganH-Index: 35
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Adverse effects associated with synthetic cannabinoid use include agitation, psychosis, seizures and cardiovascular effects, all which may result in a lethal outcome. We report the collection of data from 25 medical examiner and coroner cases where the presence of synthetic cannabinoids was analytically determined. Participating offices provided case history, investigative and relevant autopsy findings and toxicology results along with the cause and manner of death determination. This informatio...
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Objective Chronic use of synthetic cannabinoids (SCs) has been associated with a wide range of negative consequences for health including psychotic and affective disturbances. Accumulating evidence indicates that cannabinoids use may be a risk factor for schizophrenia, and chronic natural cannabis users score higher than non-users on measures of schizotypal personality traits. However, little is known regarding the personality characteristics of SC users, especially in comparison with recreation...
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#1Elise Wouters (UGent: Ghent University)H-Index: 2
#2Jolien Walraed (UGent: Ghent University)H-Index: 1
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Abstract Cannabinoid receptors type 1 (CB1) and type 2 (CB2) are promising targets for a number of diseases, including obesity, neuropathic pain, and multiple sclerosis, among others. Upon ligand-mediated activation of these receptors, multiple receptor conformations could be stabilized, resulting in a complex pattern of possible intracellular effects. Although numerous compounds have been developed and widely used to target cannabinoid receptors, their mode of action and signaling properties ar...
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#1Phoebe Sharp (University of Birmingham)H-Index: 1
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IntroductionSynthetic cannabinoids (SC), designed to mimic delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, the natural component of cannabis, have seen a rapid increase in popularity since 2008. Nearly 200 SC have b...
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#1Hina Akram (UCL: University College London)H-Index: 1
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Background:Synthetic cannabinoids are, typically, full agonists at the cannabinoid CB1 receptor, and therefore considerably more potent than natural cannabis and may have correspondingly more serio...
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A major predictor of the efficacy of natural or synthetic cannabinoids is their binding affinity to the cannabinoid type I receptor (CB1) in the central nervous system, as the main psychological effects of cannabinoids are achieved via binding to this receptor. Conventionally, receptor binding assays have been performed using isotopes, which are inconvenient owing to the effects of radioactivity. In the present study, the binding affinities of five cannabinoids for purified CB1 were measured usi...
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#1Jag H. Khalsa (NIDA: National Institute on Drug Abuse)H-Index: 9
#2Ruben Baler (NIDA: National Institute on Drug Abuse)H-Index: 37
Consumed by an estimated 2.5% of the world’s population, cannabis is the most popular illicit drug. Depending on age of onset, frequency, duration, and other variables, cannabis use can be associated with a broad spectrum of medical consequences, the range of which mirrors the physiological ubiquity and versatility of the endocannabinoid system. Importantly, the adverse consequences of cannabis use can progress to become overt clinical conditions, independently of the development of a cannabis u...
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#1Laurent KarilaH-Index: 20
#2Amine Benyamina (French Institute of Health and Medical Research)H-Index: 17
The emergence of smokable herbal products containing synthetic cannabinoids (SCs) is becoming increasingly popular in the new psychoactive substance use landscape. These compounds are mainly sold online (darknet) as an alternative to controlled and regulated psychoactive substances such as cocaine, MDMA and opiates. In the early 2000s, SCs became popular under brand names such as Spice in Europe and K2 in the USA. Substantial variations may exist in content and concentration of SC compounds in m...
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#1Tae Yeon Kong (Catholic University of Korea)H-Index: 6
#2Ju-Hyun Kim (Dongguk University)H-Index: 2
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Synthetic cannabinoids, a new class of psychoactive substances, are potent agonists of cannabinoid receptors, which mimic the psychoactive effects of the principal psychoactive component of cannabis, ∆9-tetrahydrocannabinol. Despite governmental scheduling as illicit drugs, new synthetic cannabinoids are being produced. The abuse of synthetic cannabinoids with several drugs containing different chemical groups has resulted in large numbers of poisonings. This has increased the urgency for forens...
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EAM-2201, a synthetic cannabinoid, is a potent agonist of the cannabinoid receptors that is widely abused as an illicit recreational drug in combination with other drugs. To evaluate the potential of EAM-2201 as a perpetrator of drug–drug interactions, the inhibitory effects of EAM-2201 on major drug-metabolizing enzymes, cytochrome P450s (CYPs) and uridine 5′-diphospho-glucuronosyltransferases (UGTs) were evaluated in pooled human liver microsomes using liquid chromatography–tandem mass spectro...
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Bioanalysis of new psychoactive substances (NPS) is very challenging due to the growing number of compounds with new chemical structures found on the drugs of abuse market. Screening, identification, and quantification in biosamples are needed in clinical and forensic toxicology settings, and these procedures are more challenging than the analysis of seized drug material because of extremely low concentrations encountered in biofluids but also due to diverse metabolic alterations of the parent c...
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