Cannabidiol (CBD) product contamination: Quantitative analysis of Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ9-THC) concentrations found in commercially available CBD products

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background: Regulation has not kept pace with the growth of the hemp-derived CBD market. We have evaluated the risk of Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ9-THC) contamination in 80 unregulated products with comparison to a regulated control, Epidiolex®. Methods: Local and national brands of hemp-derived oil products were purchased online and from local retailers in central Kentucky (which carry both national and local brands). These were extracted by solvent extraction and quantified by liquid-chromatography tandem mass-spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) using a validated method. Results: Of the 80 unregulated products and Epidiolex®, Δ9-THC was detected above the limit of quantification (LOQ = 0.005 mg/mL) of the assay in 52 samples, ranging from 0.008 mg/mL to 2.071 mg/mL. Twenty-one of the products tested were labelled as “THC-Free”, and 5 of these products contained detectable levels of Δ9-THC ranging from 0.015 mg/mL to 0.656 mg/mL. Conclusions: Consumers are taking hemp-derived CBD products without understanding the risks of unintentional consumption of Δ9-THC. This accidental use of Δ9-THC could have adverse effects on health and safety as well as potential legal consequences (e.g., child custody, impaired driving), as Δ9-THC drug test findings could impact employment, military, and sport eligibility status.

Original languageEnglish
Article number109522
JournalDrug and Alcohol Dependence
Volume237
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 1 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Dr. Shanna Babalonis was supported by National Institute on Drug Abuse grants R21DA045101 and R01 DA045700.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 Elsevier B.V.

Keywords

  • CBD
  • Contamination
  • Regulatory
  • Sport doping
  • Workplace drug testing
  • Δ-THC

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Toxicology
  • Pharmacology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Pharmacology (medical)

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