• Market demands drug detection for herbal highs
    Drug detection is needed for once-legal herbal highs

Bioanalytical

Market demands drug detection for herbal highs

Jul 12 2010

Previously legal herbal preparations that have since been outlawed have created a demand for new drug detection processes, according to Redwood Toxicology Laboratory.

The company, itself a creator of liquid chromatography and tandem mass spectrometry solutions for drug detection, claims that the new need arises from drug-takers' attempts to create legal highs through a combination of herbs and psychoactive research chemicals such as JWH-compounds.

"JWH-compounds bind to cannabinoid receptors in the brain and were initially developed as therapeutic agents for the treatment of pain," Redwood explains.

"However, these psychoactive research chemicals are now being sprayed on herbal material and sold as 'fake weed' or 'synthetic marijuana'."

Redwood has identified JWH-018 and JWH-073 as particular cannabinoid receptor agonists associated with mimicking the euphoric effects of marijuana, making them targets for new drug detection processes.

The company is part of the Inverness Medical Innovations group, which incorporates brands such as cardiovascular diagnostics provider Cholestech and blood coagulation monitoring systems provider HemoSense.

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