Posts Tagged → Spice
With all the discord in Washington these days, it’s rare to see several US governmental organizations working together to address a significant public health problem.
This week, the US Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) mobilized Operation Log Jam, an unusual and highly-coordinated action with six other federal agencies aimed to shut down the synthetic designer drug industry in 109 US cities. The products targeted were of two broad classes: 1) synthetic marijuana “incense” products comprised of naphthoylindole cannabimimetic compounds first synthesized by John W. Huffman’s lab at Clemson in the mid-1990s, and 2) “bath salts” or “plant food” products containing the stimulant/empathogen mephedrone (4-methylmethcathinone) or the stimulant MDPV (3,4-methylenedioxypyrovalerone).
This compilation of posts on synthetic marijuana and, to a lesser extent, “bath salts” serves as a good primer on the subject.
Sixteen-year-old boys having heart attacks.
Blog reports of deaths and suicides.
And a little known chemistry and public health resource mobilized to identify “legal highs.”
The chemical and biological phenomenon that is “synthetic marijuana” continued to develop over the last week as we learn more about these products from the medical and public health communities.
Most notably, pediatric cardiologists reported in the journal Pediatrics on three cases of Texas teenagers who experienced myocardial infarctions – heart attacks – after using a synthetic marijuana product (DOI: 10.1542/peds.2010-3823).