Compact Mass Spectrometry (CMS) for the Detection and Quantification of Chemical Compounds Related to Cannabis

The cannabinoid makeup of cannabis has significantly changed over the past few decades. Efforts to increase the psychotropic effects of cannabis have resulted in a THC content for current strains of the crop of 30 to 40 percent compared with only 5 percent 30 years ago. Up-regulating the THC content of the plant causes a loss of other cannabinoids the plant is producing. Some of these other cannabinoids, such as CBD, are believed to be responsible for its medical benefits.

Furthermore, no pesticides can currently legally be used during the production process. However, a recent test showed that two out of three samples of legal cannabis samples had pesticide residues above the legal limit for an edible. Once sample exceeded the limit by a factor of 1,600. Such a sample poses a consumer health risk and clearly shows the potential for illegal growing procedures or unclear product streams in the marketplace.

Additionally, cannabis contains more than 400 chemical compounds, 80 of which are unique to cannabis. This fact, plus the finding of cannabinoid receptors in human nerve, immune and brain cells explains why this product is such an interesting target for medicinal use.

This webinar examines three different workflows surrounding compact mass spectrometry as they apply to cannabis law enforcement, it’s natural product research, and product control.