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All You Need to Know About JWH-018

Published on: December 23, 2017

Written by: Confirm BioSciences.

JWH-018 is known as a chemical with analgesic properties thus it is often described as a pain-killer. It was actually named after the initials of its proponent John W. Huffman. It is a cannabinoid agonist for the receptors tagged as CB1 and CB2 and comes from the family of naphthoylindoles. The JWH-018 can be consumed orally by individuals at a dose of around 3 mg to 20 mg. However, if the substance needs to be smoked, then the dosage should be lowered.

JWH-018 is actually brown in color and is lumpy, dry and somewhat sticky in nature. When it is still raw, the compound is dense. The denser the compound, the darker it can get. When it goes through certain processes such as crystallization, its appearance will definitely change. This raises confusion as to the purity and actual appearance of the JWH-018.

Pharmacology & Metabolism of JWH-018

Pharmacology studies indicate JWH-018 has a Δ9-THC-like activity affecting cardiovascular and central nervous systems and causing psychoactive effects such as decreased activity and body temperature, analgesia and catalepsy, related to its binding to central cannabinoid receptor, CB1, and peripheral cannabinoid receptor, CB2.

The reported biding affinity of JWH-018 foCB1 and CB2 receptors is 9.00±5.00 and 2.94±2.65 nM, respectively, with binding CB1 to CB2affinity ratio of 3.06, indicating higher selectivity for CB2 over CB1 receptor.

JWH-018 has a N-Pentyl side chain in place of morpholinoethyl group, with N-Pentyl exhibiting similar steric and electrostatic properties as morpholinoethyl group, and reduced CB2 selectivity. JWH-018 has five times greater affinity for CB1 receptor than THC of plant source marijuana.

JWH-018 does not accumulate in peripheral tissues or albumin deposits one week days following chronic dosing, suggesting it is metabolized and eliminated from the body. Based on its metabolic breakdown, the effects of JWH-018 in humans last anywhere from 3 to 5 hours, shorter than that of THC from plant marijuana. During this time humans experience a series of psychoactive effects resulting from JWH-018 biding to CB1 and CB2 receptors. While effects wear off after few hours, there is a distinct addictive quality that can lead to significant withdrawal symptoms after JWH-018 has been used on a prolonged and frequent basis.

While plant marijuana THC is metabolized into a more active compound, 11-hydroxy THC leading to latent peak, JWH-018 is not, contributing to observed differences between the two. Due to distinct metabolism, JWH-018 peaks rapidly and without the standard 10-15 minute delay observed with plant marijuana THC. The result is a faster high, making JWH-018 particularly appealing to users and contributing to its rapidly increasing recreation drug popularity.

However, faster breakdown often leads to re-dosing upon comedown, increasing involved risks with respect to its addictive properties and chronic use. Chronic use leads to down regulation of central and peripheral CB1 and CB2 receptors indicating a traditional cannabinoid tachyphylactic response of decreased effect and duration of JWH-018 in prolonged use. This in itself introduces inherent danger as users are prone to increased dosing for purposes of obtaining matching highs leading to higher toxicity effects.

Effects of JWH-018 Use

There have been studies or press releases that suggest that the compound JWH-018 is the primary ingredient in a legal herbal blend known as Spice Gold. Although this is a legal herbal blend, its effects is said to be similar to marijuana. In fact, the substance is already tagged as a synthetic marijuana version of this drug. Though these speculations seem to spread, its reality is not proven by science yet.

JWH-018 is also said to produce similar effects to that of THC or tetrahydrocannabinol. This is a substance that produces mild to moderate analgesic effects. The two differs however depending on what happens after these substances are smoked by an individual. In JWH-018, the peak results are experienced at an instant. In THC, the effects are delayed for around 10 to 15 minutes.

However, before you buy JWH-018, you should know more about its real effects in an individual. Its effects are mainly categorized as similar to cannabis. Some side effects include anxiety, nausea, hallucinations, paranoia and tachycardia. These effects become more prominent when taken in high doses.

What Parents Should Know about JWH-018

Parents may not be fully aware of the real effects of JWH-018 in their children. This is despite the fact that the substance is said to be legal in some parts of the US including Arizona. Here are some facts that every parent should know when it comes to this component:

  • Blends of JWH-018 may differ from one manufacturer to another. Manufacturers list the herbal ingredients found inside their products. The problem is they do not specify how much of the JWH-018 compound is present in a blend. Parents must be warned about this as too much of the compound may bring about greater side effects.
  • JWH-018 should not be taken with alcohol. Parents should be wary if their children attend parties where alcohol and smoking may be a usual part of the affair. JWH-018 may be offered during the occasion. And with a glass of wine, smoking the blend may result to severe headaches that can be felt at the base of the skull. This can last for several hours and is worse than any type of hangover.
  • JWH-018 blends can have harsh effects on the respiratory system. The lungs may experience too much pain while the throat may also be burned by the substance.
  • JWH-018 is supposed to be taken like a pain reliever at the right dosage. Taking it in excess will cause all the dangers presented above. Parents, as well as young ones, must be warned about this.