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Posts Tagged ‘synthetic marijuana’

Facts and Stats on Substance Abuse by Employees

Friday, February 15th, 2013

The image that comes to mind when talking about people who abuse drugs is often someone who is incapable of holding down a job and who slinks around shady parts of town looking for drugs. But the facts belie that stereotype.

According to a nationwide study by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMSHA), 70% of all drug abusers in the country are currently employed.

These drug abusers are 10 times more likely to miss work, and 3 times more likely to be less productive than an average worker. They are 5 times more likely to file for workers’ comp and almost 4 times as likely to get into a workplace accident. They cost, on average, twice as much as an average worker with regards to their healthcare costs. And due to all those reasons they tend to change jobs almost 3 times more than the rest of the workforce.

Top Drugs for Abusers

Out of almost 12 million drug tests done in 2011, almost 3.5% came back positive. And while that is a small number percentage-wise, it is a huge number when talking about employed individuals. Because that 3.5% represents about 400,000 workers.

Marijuana was the top drug that people were busted for, with about half of that 3.5% of positive results being for marijuana.

That was followed by prescription drug abuse, which is a concern for both young and older employees. Oxycodone and opiate-based prescription drugs were the top two groups among prescription drugs abused. Prescription drug abuse seems to be a concern mostly for urban, white collar employees. All together they made up about 30% of all the positive drug test results.

Amphetamine and Methamphetamine were the third most common group, making up about 15-20% of positive results.

Also on the rise, and a concern for mostly young people, are synthetic drugs like synthetic marijuana and synthetic cocaine.

While it may be a tough reality to face, it is obvious that the American workforce is infected with the nationwide plague of drug abuse and the only way to eradicate it is with comprehensive drug testing policies.

Read more about the interview here.

FAQ: All You Need To Know About Molly

Sunday, February 10th, 2013

1. What is molly?

Molly is theorized to be short for “molecule” and is a slang term for MDMA (3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine) that comes in the form of pure MDMA crystals or powder (as opposed to pills). It is chemically the same thing as any other MDMA.

2. Is molly illegal?

According to Barbara Carreno, a public affairs officer at the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), back in 2002 when molly first made a name for itself, the DEA temporarily made it illegal and sent their recommendation to the HHS (Health and Human Services) that it be a “controlled substance.” After they conducted scientific studies, however, the DEA was overruled. Molly is currently legal in New York State under federal law. However, if molly is tested and classified as an imitation-controlled substance, the user in possession of it can be charged under the Federal Analog Act.

3. Why do some users consider molly “safer?”

In theory, molly is high purity MDMA powder, which means unlike ecstasy, it’s not supposed to be cut with any fillers or other drugs. But according to Barbara Carreno, a public affairs officer at the DEA, molly is an industrial chemical that was not made for human consumption, and you put your health and safety at risk when you use it.

4. What are molly bath salts?

In some parts of the country, molly bath salts are marketed as being similar to synthetic marijuana, called “spice” or “K2.” They’re labeled as bath products, but Internet commenters describe the experience of sniffing them as creating effects similar to “legal cocaine” or “legal speed.”

5. What is molly’s plant food?

Molly’s plant food is a synthetic hallucinogenic amphetamine marketed as a “plant food” that contains ingredients that produce highs similar to Ecstasy. Molly’s plant food is usually purchased at a convenience store with label warning “not intended for human consumption.” The active ingredient is mephedrone, which is not a scheduled (DEA) drug, therefore making it legal.

6. What is mephedrone?

Mephedrone (4-methylmethcathinone) is a stimulant which is closely chemically related to amphetamines that have been found in molly drug tests. Users report that mephedrone produces a similar experience to drugs like amphetamines, ecstasy or cocaine.

7. How will molly affect users?

Molly affects users in several ways. According to the DEA, MDMA acts as a stimulant and a psychedelic that may cause hallucinogenic effects. After being inhaled, eaten or parachuted (folded into a tissue and swallowed) molly leads in euphoria – a feeling of great happiness or well-being. It induces the release of neurotransmitters serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine making the users feel elated, empathic and full of energy. However, negative effects have also been reported including but not limited to increased heart rate, blood pressure and temperature, blurred vision, nausea, increased anxiety, depression, etc.

8. What will happen if molly is mixed with another drug?

Most of the time molly is taken, it is mixed with another drug. The effects strongly depend on your tolerance, what drug it is mixed with, and how much of each drug is used.

9. How addictive is molly?

Molly, as a term used to describe pure MDMA, is both hallucinogenic and a stimulant, but stimulant properties where the body can become dependent are most likely to lead to addiction. This type of dependency is what leads the body to crash after the drug wears off. Users will feel the urge to take another dose in order to get the stimulant effect again. If molly is cut with another stimulant such as cocaine or amphetamine, the addictiveness increases.

10. Can you overdose on molly?

Yes. Although death is a rare occurrence, it is possible to overdose. The typical recreational dosage ranges from 80 mg to 150 mg; and 200 mg above is considered a heavy dosage. Going beyond that can result in a number of negative effects, most likely vomiting, headaches and dizziness.




Banning JWH-018 in United States

Monday, May 24th, 2010

Banning JWH-018 is a hot topic for users, sellers and law enforcers in the US. Because of its speculated health risks, they are totally pursuing its banning for good. As of today, JWH018 is still legal under the federal law of United States. However, some State officials already took legal actions of banning JWH-018 and other herbal smoke ingredients in their respective jurisdictions.

Arguments For and Against Banning JWH-018 in United States

To make a sound judgment, it is indeed vital to fully weigh the pros & cons of banning a substance in the country. Since this is certainly a delicate issue, careful examination of the problem is of utmost importance. Here are a few arguments on banning JWH-018 in the US. Consider both sides and learn from different points of view. Being open-minded to gain a new perspective of things is good in asserting beliefs.

Argument #1: JWH-018 is dangerous because it creates psychotropic effects when smoked, which can threaten the health of users.

Rebuttal #1: It may have shown some undesirable effects but nobody died from it. In addition, there are no clinical studies to support these claims. It is also most likely that other ingredients combined with it may have caused the side effect. Also, if the dangers pose by a substance would be the only reason for banning; we should also include those chemicals found at home with potentials of abuse such as pain thinners and bathroom cleaners.

Argument #2: No recognized medical use.

Rebuttal #2: It cannot be medically applied yet since there are no studies to prove its health benefits. In fact, one of the reasons against banning JWH-018 is it would create a massive downturn to medical science. Banning it may pose difficulty to further studies and discoveries.

Argument #3: It is branded as ‘synthetic marijuana’. Not controlling it would be entirely wrong. Also, it is already recognized by the DEA (Drug Enforcement Administrations) as a drug and chemical of concern.

Rebuttal #3: It is labeled as synthetic marijuana because it resembles cannabis-like effects. However, even the Federal Analog Act conditions do not seem to apply to JWH-018.

Rebuttal #3.a: Regarding the federal law, the conditions are quite ambiguous so interpretations are subject to controversy. Since there is no presence of “or” / “and,” it cannot be conclusively decided that JWH-018 must meet all the expectations to become a controlled substance.

Argument #4: There is no restriction on sale. Anybody can purchase it even minors or the underage. Those who are in favor of banning it believe it would put a stop to the epidemic spread of JWH-018 in the market.

Rebuttal #4: Banning JWH-018 is too harsh without further investigation. Rather, restricting it to adults over 18 is a better option.

Rebuttal #4.a: If restricting it for minors only, the drug would just become like a beer. Underage, minors or teenagers can always ask their adult friends to buy it for them.

Argument #6: If banned, conviction of a person due to use of JWH-018 would be difficult. Drug does not show up in drug tests.

Rebuttal #6: They can always develop a drug test that will detect JWH-018 in some ways. Banning it will hasten the creation of one.

Until now, debates of banning JWH-018 in United States are still on discussion. Surprisingly, plenty of people are actually entirely against banning it. Mainly due to the future effects and problems that may arise. They anticipate that banning JWH-018 will create a black market. It will just eventually go underground. Some will just turn to the Internet to purchase. Well, this is likely to be true since that is what is happening to most banned substances today. Some even say, do not ban it but rather regulate it. That may be a better idea instead.

synthetic drug banner

Anyway, whether to ban or not, the main point is people lack sufficient information and understanding about JWH-018. It might actually be thoughtless to ban a substance without clear evidence of its effects, harmful or not. And why use a substance without knowing its potential adverse effects? So, do you still think banning JWH-018 is a better solution or not? It is totally up to you. Whether you are in favor of banning it or entirely against it, remember that being responsible towards your own actions and decisions is the most significant thing to do.

This Article is written by Lena Butler, contributor of Test Country Articles.

Understanding JWH-018

Tuesday, May 18th, 2010

synthetic drug banner

JWH-018 is one of several hundred JWH compounds developed over the last few years by John W. Huffman (JWH), organic chemist, as part of research on analogues and metabolites of THC, the active ingredient of naturally sourced marijuana plant (10). Intended exclusively for purposes of scientific purposes, JWH-018 has never been intended for human consumption, let alone recreational use. While there are anywhere from 100 to 300 various JWH compounds, JWH-018 has yielded the highest interest due to its active group functional similarity to THC.

Introduction of marijuana-specific treatment programs (11) have opened the door for a cheaper more accessible alternative, JWH-018, a synthetic marijuana. While it is easy to assume that JWH-018 would act the same as naturally sourced marihuana, the reality is that they are quite different. In many aspects JWH-018 is more potent and inherently more dangerous to human body. To fully understand JWH-018, it is necessary to consider certain aspects of its chemical characteristics, pharmacology, pharmacokinetics, metabolism and addiction potential.

Chemical Structure


JWH-018, also known as K2, fake weed, synthetic marihuana, “spice” and  1-pentyl-3-(1-naphthoyl) indole is a synthetic cannabinoid from aminoalkylindole family, covered under US patent  #7241799(4). It acts as CB1 and CB2, receptor agonist, with partial CB2 selectivity.[1][2] . As both CB1 and CB2 are involved neurotransmitter regulation, JWH-018 has a significant impact on a wide range of neural functions.  Four to five times more powerful than weed, it is a lipid-soluble, non-polar, small molecule (9), with physical appearance of a white crystalline powder with pharmacological resemblance but no chemical relation to tetrahydrocannabinols (THC), an active ingredient of Cannabis sativa L. (marihuana), nor to other cannabinoids from cannabis plant (5). Consequently JWH-018 is not categorized as a THC substance (6).


1)     Influence of the N-1 alkyl chain length of cannabimimetic indoles upon CB1 and CB2 receptor binding, Aung, M. M.; et al. (2000), Drug and Alcohol Dependence 60 (2): 133–140, doi:10.1016/S0376-8716(99)00152-0.

2)     Cannabimimetic indole derivatives, US6,900,236 (PDF version) (2005-05-31) Alexandros Makriyannis, Hongfeng Deng

3)     JWH-018 CYP450 Inhibition. Raw data. Netherlands. 18 Dec. 2008

4)     Cannabimimetic indole derivatives, Makriyannis, Alexandros, and Hongfeng Deng. University of Connecticut, assignee, Patent 7241799. 2007

5) http://www.babelation.com/content/jwh-018synthetic-cannabinoid-agonist-synthetic-cannabis-found-be-4-5-times-stronger-then-mar.

6) JWH-018, 1-Pentyl-3-(1-naphthoyl)indole, Purported Ingredient of “Spice”, July 2009, http://www.deadiversion.usdoj.gov/drugs_concern/spice/spice_jwh018.htm)

9)      Understanding the Spice Phenomenon, EMCDDA, EMCDDA 2009  Thematic paper, 2009

10)     Synthesis of Cannabimimetic Indoles, John W. Huffman, 2008

11)     Effects of THC and lofexidine in a human laboratory model of marijuana withdrawal and relapse, Margaret Haney & Carl L. Hart & Suzanne K. Vosburg & Sandra D. Comer & Stephanie Collins Reed & Richard W. Foltin, 7 November 2007

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Answers, comments, information, articles and opinions provided on all TestCountry related webpages are general information, and are not intended to substitute for informed professional medical, psychiatric, counseling, psychological, or other professional advice. You should not use the information on TestCountry for diagnosing or treating a health problem or disease, or prescribing any medication or other treatment. You should always speak with your physician or other healthcare professional before taking any medication or nutritional, herbal or homeopathic supplement, rehabilitation or detoxification from any substance abuse or adopting any treatment for a health or drug problem.

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