CP-497 & CP-220 have been know to cause retinal (eye) damage & failure.
Also most of these chemicals are NOT WATER SOLUBLE which means it does not break down easily at all in the human body. This alone,in combination with known cancer causing chemicals could "without question" points towards a potential illness or disease down the road. Maybe even years after use?
IF YOU THINK THIS CRAP IS SAFE? THINK AGAIN! READ THIS!
Synthetic cannabinoids are quite different chemical structures from THC. And unlike cannabis, the new drugs have never been tested in humans.
One of these synthetic cannabinoids, JWH 018, was first made in 1995 for experimental purposes in the lab of Clemson University researcher John W. Huffman, PhD.
"In terms of biological activity, these things are similar to THC, the active compound in cannabis," Huffman tells WebMD. "Now the thing is, nobody knows anything about how these new compounds act in the human body. Anecdotal reports say they stick around in the body for quite a long time."
More than 100 different synthetic cannabinoids have been created. In his 2008 study, Auwarter tested seven of the herbal products and found they contained different levels of JWH 018, a synthetic cannabinoid created by Pfizer called CP 47,497, or both.
Since then, Auwarter has found five different synthetic cannabinoids in the products. Huestis estimates that about 10 different synthetic cannabinoids have been detected in the products, usually in some combination.
No. Until a drug is tested, it cannot be considered safe. Not only have synthetic cannabinoids not been tested, nearly all were created for experimental use in animals and cell cultures -- not in humans.
And there are good reasons to believe that some if not all of these drugs are unsafe. JWH 018 and its many cousins, for example, have a chemical structure shared with known cancer-causing agents.
JWH 018 inventor John W. Huffman, PhD, puts it bluntly.
"It is like Russian roulette to use these drugs. We don't know a darn thing about them for real," he tells WebMD.
Most of these drugs were created because they bind much more tightly to the body's cannabinoid receptors than THC does. THC, in fact, only partially binds to these important regulators of body function. Many of the synthetic cannabinoids fully activate the receptors.
"When you take these drugs, you are hijacking the part of the brain important for many functions: temperature control, food intake, perception, memory, and problem solving," Huestis says. "And people taking these high-potency drugs are affecting other important functions throughout their bodies -- hormone functions, for example."
Moreover, cannabinoids also bind CB2, the cannabinoid receptor that helps regulate the immune system.
Finally, all of the effects of these drugs may not become apparent for a long time. That's because they are stored in the body for a long period of time.
"The fact is these drugs have not been tested in humans, and we don't know what they could do," Huestis says. "There may be acute toxicity; there may be long-term toxicity. We don't know any of that."
And here's another alarming thing that isn't known. Tests show that even the same brand of one of these products may have different drugs -- in different amounts -- at different times. Since the synthetic cannabinoids are very powerful, even a small increase in dose can have much more powerful side effects.
And since these products are not regulated drugs, there's no way to know how big a dose you're getting. "No drug" is safe in any amount if you don't know what it is and how much of it you're taking.
Last year, German researchers reported the case of a 20-year-old man who had been using the Spice Gold product daily for eight months.
Not long after starting the product, the man found that he needed larger and larger doses to feel an effect. He quickly increased his use to 3 grams per day -- 10 times the dose that produced the effects described by Auwarter.
The man felt a continuous need for the product. He was unable to get it for a period of time and experienced unrest, drug craving, nightmares, sweating, nausea, tremor, headache, high blood pressure, and racing heartbeat. This went away when he again began using the product.
Finally, the man was persuaded to stop using the product. But fearing a repeat of his earlier experience, he checked into a hospital. Sure enough, he again went through classic withdrawal symptoms that lasted a week.
This clinical description fits with reports that Auwarter has received. He says that while classic drug dependence is rare among cannabis users, it may be much more common among users of synthetic cannabinoids.
Do drug tests detect K2, Spice Gold, and other herbal incense products?
Not yet. Huffman says he heard from the director of a very strict boys' school that gives weekly drug tests to pupils. Despite finding that some of the boys were smoking K2, none of them tested positive on the drug screens.
Auwarter says his team is close to developing a urine test for some of the synthetic cannabinoids. But today, the only way to identify the compounds is via a blood test -- and that has to be performed before the effects of the drug wear off.
Is K2 Addictive? YES! Users CAUTION! I am addicted to this stuff! I smoke first thing "wake & bake" then throughout the day. About 3- 3.5 grams per day. Not only do i feel it beating the hell out of my liver & kidneys i also feel it in my wallet. This stuff definetly is NOT good for you. These chemicals could have serious long tem effects on your brain,nervous system,& vision. My overall heath was perfect before the use of k2. I have been using k2 for about 2 months now. I will report back in 2 weeks to disclose my liver values after i see my Dr.
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