Marihuana Components: Effects of Smoking on Δ9-Tetrahydrocannabinol and Cannabidiol

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Science  11 Jun 1971:
Vol. 172, Issue 3988, pp. 1158-1159
DOI: 10.1126/science.172.3988.1158


Cigarettes impregnated with various preparations of Δ9-tetrahydro-cannabinol (Δ9-THC) and cannabidiol were artificially smoked, and the smoke was analyzed by means of gas chromatography and a combination of gas chromatography and mass spectrometry. Retention of the two test substances in smoke was 21 to 23 percent of the starting amount. The ratio of Δ9-THC to cannabidiol in smoke is different from that in starting material. It is suggested that these differences are the result of partial cyclization of the cannabidiol to Δ9-THC. An increase in the percentage of cannabinol in smoke is the result of a partial dehydrogenation drogenation of Δ9-THC or cannabidiol. No evidence for the isomerization of Δ9-THC to Δ8-THC or for the formation of new pyrolyzed products was found.