Five Substances Used In Creation Of Fake Weed Banned
According to the website livescience.com, the Drug Enforcement Agency has recently banned five substances which are used in the creation of the so called fake weed, which is also known as “spice”, or K2.
Thanks to this change, anyone who will be caught with spice, or who will be caught dealing it, will be charged. The use and the distribution of the spice are now illegal in the U.S and the ones who break the law will be charged for drug us, or drug trafficking. The DEA included the JWH-018, JWH-073, JWH-200, CP-47,497 and cannabicyclohexanol substances in the same category as the heroin, and the substances from which ecstasy is made out of: Schedule 1 under the Controlled Substances Act. These substances are outlawed in numerous countries from Europe, and in 18 states from the United States of America. All the branches from the U.S military have banned the substance as well.
The DEA stated that they took this decision because the substances from which the spice is made are extremely dangerous for the health. Numerous people, especially teenagers, have been taken to the hospital because of them, and some of these people have even lost their lives. People took them because they were legal, without knowing that they are very toxic. The DEA and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services will analyze the substances, in order to see if they should be banned forever. For the moment, the ban will be applied for one year. 2010 was a very busy year for the emergency rooms, as they saw numerous teenagers who suffered because of these drugs. They came with hallucinations, agitation, vomiting, and so on.
Dr. Anthony Scalzo, a professor of toxicology at St. Louis University said that the K2 itself is not dangerous for the health, as it is made from various herbs. However, those herbs are sprayed with unknown chemicals and substances, and those are the ones which are damaging for the health. John W. Huffman of Clemson University, who studies cannabinoid receptors, was the one who created the K2. He created it in the beginning of the 1990s, and he wrote a book about it, in which he presented the recipe for making it. However, he realized that somehow his recipe got leaked, as in China and Korea; people were using the substance as a growth stimulant for plants. Huffman said that someone from Europe might have taken the substance, and used it in order to smoke it. It seems absurd, but it is very likely that this is the way in which it happened.
He said that the chemical is very powerful, being ten times stronger than the active ingredient from marijuana, the THC. This means that a person can smoke less K2 in order to feel the same effects that THC causes. Both K2 and THC work in the same manner. Once it has entered the body, the substance travels to the CB1 receptors, which control the nervous system from the brain. K2 also affects the CB2 receptors, which affect the immune system from the brain. Scalzo said that last year, in less than one month, 30 teenagers were brought to the hospital because they smoked the K2. He said that these teenagers suffered from hallucinations, nausea, and other side effects, such as elevated blood pressure. He said that some of these side effects can be caused by marijuana smoking as well, such as hallucinations for example. However, he said that the K2 is much more dangerous than the marijuana, as it can cause health problems.
He said that the main reason why the K2 is so dangerous for the health is either because one of the compounds from which it is made out of, or because the concentration was too high. The JWH-018 and the other synthetic cannabinoids were first introduced in the United States of America in 2008. That is when the U.S. Customs and Border Protection found them at a person who wanted to bring them in the country. Michele M. Leonhart, a DEA administrator, said that many teenagers smoke these products because they are legal. Since they are legal, they consider them to be safe, but that is not the case. She believes that thanks to the new initiative taken by the DEA, fewer teenagers will suffer. However, it is always the possibility that they will buy the drugs, just like they can buy marijuana.
In Europe, the substances have been banned on numerous occasions, but the dealers, constantly find a way of bending the law. They use different substances, and the governments need to update the banned list. However, that takes time, and by the time they have updated the list, people already purchased the substances. Scalzo said that he has tried to find out more about the reasons why the K2 has such terrible side effects, but he has a difficult time doing it, as the ones who take it, are unwilling to cooperate with him. He is surprised by the fact that people are willing to put certain substances in their bodies, without knowing their side effects. In the majority of the cases the teenagers refuse the help, because they are afraid that someone will find out about it. It is too bad that they would sacrifice their health, and even possibly, their life for such a thing.11