Drug Free Sport Staff Writers

Drug Free Sport Staff Writers

Friday, March 25, 2011

Synthetic drugs – The dawn of a new era or just “rebranding”

In October of 2004 the U.S. government put together a national synthetic drugs action plan. In that plan they stated, “The illicit production of synthetic drugs is hardly a new problem in this country,” followed by, “That uncertain future is now a disturbing reality.” So if it was a disturbing reality then, what should we call it now? The plan focused on all synthetic drugs, more specifically methamphetamine and MDMA (Ecstasy). The plan was put in place but the problem had already existed for years in both the United States and around the world, so the question remains how do we confront and solve this problem?

What is the definition of a synthetic drug?

USA - The term "Synthetic," as used in the National Drug Control Strategy (NDCS), the National Synthetic Drugs Action Plan, and the 2006 Synthetic Drug Control Strategy, refers to drugs whose origins are not primarily organic, but rather are produced via chemical synthesis. (http://www.whitehousedrugpolicy.gov/publications/international/factsht/counter_synth_drg.html)

Europe - Artificially produced substances for the illicit market which are almost wholly manufactured from chemical compounds in illicit laboratories (amphetamine, benzodiazepines). Interpol:

Drugs of concern in the athlete population:

Bath Salts – MDPV, MDA, Mephedrone (3, 4-methylenedioxypyrovalerone, 3, 4-methylenedioxyamphetamine). Bath salts have no history of FDA approved medical use. Reportedly, they have four times the potency of methylphenidate (Ritalin, Concerta).

Street names

· Ivory wave
· Purple Wave
· Hurricane Charley
· Aura

Side effects

Substances have been reported to the Poison Control Centers by 33 states. CBS medical correspondent Dr. Jennifer Ashton reports, “It's a central nervous system stimulant, so it will increase your blood pressure, increase your heart rate, can cause anything from chest pain, heart attack, and stroke. Those are just the physical symptoms. Some psychological (symptoms include) delusions, paranoia, psychosis. They're highly addictive, very dangerous."

The Law

On the DEA list of Drugs of concern but not currently illegal in the U.S.A. Currently not banned by WADA under its doping code, or the NCAA.  Illegal in Europe.

Synthetic cannabinoids - (JWH-018, JWH-073, HU-210, etc…).

Street names

· K2
· Spice
· Yucatan Fire
· Genie

Side effects

Reports have shown that synthetic cannabinoids found in K2 and Spice could have the potential to be three to five times as potent as marijuana. Users have experienced blackouts, stoppage of breathing, Heart palpitations, and hallucinations to name a few.

The Law

Schedule I controlled drug by the DEA. Currently prohibited under the WADA doping code, and other sport governing bodies. Will be included on the NCAA banned drug classes for the 2011-2012 year.

Designer phenethylamines - (Over 179 created by Alexander Shulgin*)

Street names


Side effects

Users have reported hallucinations similar to those who use LSD, but the intensity is reported to be higher. These drugs are both stimulants and psychedelics that report to have a slow-onset of action that has an unanticipated effect on new users; they take a certain amount and don't feel any effect, so they take more. This is the exact process that leads to harmful, if not fatal overdoses.

The Law

On the DEA list of Drugs of concern but not currently illegal in the U.S.A.  Currently not banned by WADA under its doping code, or the NCAA. Illegal in Europe.

DEA Drugs and Chemicals of Concern -

These three synthetic drug products are sold at various locations including, gas stations, head shops, online and convenient stores. Law enforcement officials are reporting that abuse of bath salts has become “prevalent”, and are taking the path of synthetic cannabiniods, designer phenethylamines are on the verge of becoming main stream nationally with the help of Dr. Alexander Shulgin and his large following. Similar to K-2, Spice, and "bath salts," the primary concern surrounding 2C-E is the painful lack of information. We do not have any short or long term studies to legitimize the risk in taking the drugs. We don’t know how 2 C-E will interact with other drugs, alcohol, or even medications. Unfortunately lack of knowledge in this case could can easily lead to death.

Please remember, just because something claims to be “legal” or “all natural,” doesn’t mean it is safe for you to ingest. Synthetic substances are manmade and do not occur in nature, this does not mean they are safe. They are potentially life-threatening."

* Alexander "Sasha" Shulgin, Ph.D., is a pharmacologist and chemist known for his creation of new psychoactive chemicals. Shulgin has synthesized and bioassayed (self-tested) hundreds of psychoactive chemicals, recording his work in four books and more than two hundred papers.

Monday, March 14, 2011

UPDATE - K2/Spice (synthetic cannabinoids)

What is K2?
·         K2/Spice is one, of many products that have become synonymous with synthetic cannabinoids or cannabimimetics.  The ingredients listed on a package of K2 incense are all herbs, but research has shown that products such as K2 or Spice are contaminated or laced with synthetic cannabinoids such as JWH018, JWH073, and HU-210.
What are synthetic cannabinoids?
·         Synthetic cannabinoids memic the effects of cannabis (Weed, Mary Jane, or in some circles “broccoli”), by acting on the same receptors.
·         Synthetic cannabinoids or Cannabimimetics such as cannabincyclohexanol (CP47,497-C8) and JWH-018 can be found in products such as K2 and Spice. 
·         WADA, and many professional organizations (MiLB, PGA TOUR, LPGA, etc…) bans these substances, and the UCLA laboratory can now test for the most commonly seen ingredients (JWH018, JWH073, and HU-210).   NCAA will include on banned substance list in August.
History of Synthetic Cannabinoids
·         The compounds carry the initials of their developer, John W. Huffman, an organic chemist at Clemson University in South Carolina.  The main purpose was to develop chemicals that mimicked marijuana or cannabimimetics in the brain in the hopes of developing new medicines.    
·         The project was funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) and the findings were published in a scientific journal, including the formula for JWH-018 in 2005.
·          JWH-018 was given the 18 designation because it was the 18th such compound his lab team made during the research project. It has been reported that Dr. Huffman’s team developed over 450 additional compounds similar to JWH-018. 
·         Germany was one of the first places where products containing the compounds were seen. Officials there encountered a large number of cases involving the version known as Spice in 2008 and moved quickly, making those products illegal under the German Narcotics Law in early 2009.

·         Because of the newness of the drug, medical and law enforcement officials have little documentation about the medical consequences of its use. Some internet forums indicate constant use can be addictive.
·         We have seen reports of the following locally and across the nation:
o   Shortness of breath
o   Stopped breathing
o   Blackouts
o   Heart palpitations
o   Dizziness
o   Headaches
o   Hallucinations
o   Severe agitation
o   Elevated heart rate and blood pressure
o   Vomiting
o   Tremors and Seizures
·         Reports have shown that synthetic cannabinoids found in K2 and Spice could have the potential to be three to five times as potent as marijuana. 
o   There have been no long-term studies of the use of K2/Spice.
·         These products are being manufactured in China, drug regulations are very relaxed, and exporting illegal substances is not uncommon.

The Law
U.S.A. - As of January 13, 2011, the DEA has temporarily placed five synthetic cannabinoid chemicals into schedule 1 of the Controlled Substances Act.  This placement is good for one year or until a final determination has been made.  Those chemicals are: JWH-018, JWH-073, JWH-200, CP-47,497 and CP-47,497.
Canada – K2, Spice and other incense products are not specifically prohibited in     Canada, but synthetic cannabis is listed as a schedule II drug.
South Korea - South Korea officially added JWH-018, CP 47,497 and HU-210 to the controlled substance list on July 1, 2009, effectively making these chemicals illegal.
Japan - Japan has banned JWH-018, CP 47, 497, and homologues, and HU-210 since Oct. 2009
Chile - The Chilean Ministry of Health on April 24, 2009 declared the sale of synthetic cannabis to be illegal
Switzerland - synthetic cannabinoids are illegal.
Germany - JWH-018, CP 47,497 and the C6, C8 and C9 homologues of CP 47,497 are illegal in Germany since January 2009

Most common synonyms
  • Herbal Incense
  • Spice
  • K2
  • K3
  • K2 Spice
  • K2 Summit
  • Premium Blend K2
  • Spice Gold
  • Spice 99
  • Black Mamba Spice
  • Synthetic Marijuana
  • Legal Herb
  • Legal Weed
  • K2 Weed
  • Synthetic THC
  • JWH-018
  • Vodoo Spice
  • Serenity Now
·         Not for human consumption
·         Side effects
o   Stopped breathing
o   Blackouts
o   Hallucinations
o   Elevated heart rate and blood pressure
o   Tremors and Seizures

·         There have been no long-term studies of the use of K2/Spice.
·         UCLA laboratory and others can now test for the most commonly seen ingredients (JWH018, JWH073, and HU-210).  
·         Schedule 1 of the Controlled Substances Act
o   The drug or other substance has a high potential for abuse
o   The drug or other substance has no currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States.
o   There is a lack of accepted safety for use of the drug or other substance under medical supervision.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Methylhexaneamine (1, 3-dimethylamylamine) – UPDATE

Methylhexaneamine (1, 3-dimethylamylamine) – Why this is now a problem.
We previously covered the topic 1, 3, Dimethylamyaline (Geranium Oil) back in September of 2010; after receiving an alarming number of emails and responses from clients and followers on various social media websites.    We thought it would be a good idea to address some of your questions. 

What is Methylhexaneamine?
Methylhexaneamine is a weak stimulant that was first trademarked under the name ‘Forthane’ by Eli Lilly in April of 1971 as a nasal decongestant.  The trademark has long expired, but Methylhexaneamine has continued to grow in popularity over the years.

Why is Methylhexaneamine banned by some sport organizations?
Methylhexaneamine is considered a stimulant; most sport governing bodies around the world consider most stimulants to be banned, including Methylhexaneamine.

I’ve asked about a particular product in the past and it was fine, so why is it banned now?
In 1994, the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act (DSHEA) passed into law and radically changed the dietary supplement marketplace.  DSHEA expanded the category of dietary supplements further to include:
·                Ginseng
·                Fish oils
·                Enzymes
·                DHEA and more
 DSHEA removed much of the FDA's control over dietary supplements and as a result created what is considered to be a virtually unregulated industry.  Some supplement products change frequently (quarterly, yearly, etc…), others are forced to change because of market recalls.  This uncertainty is why we must continue to check dietary supplement ingredients, because last year’s formula could be obsolete and the new product could include ingredients banned for athletes.

I did not see Methylhexaneamine listed as an ingredient, could it be listed as something else?
Yes.  Here are the most common names (synonyms) that we have seen listed in dietary supplements; if you come across any of these names in an ingredients list, I advise you to not consume.
1, 3-dimethylamylamine (Most common – This is updated from the September blog)
·         Geranium oil extract
·         Geranuim oil
·         Geranium extract
·         Geranamine (trademarked by Proviant Technologies)
·         Methylhexanamine
·         DMAA
·         Forthane
·         Forthan
·         Floradrene
·         4-methyl-2-hexanamine
·         4-Methylhexan-2-amine
·         2-amino-4-methylhexane
·         2-hexanamine, 4-methyl-
·         2-hexanamine, 4-methyl- (9CI)
·         1,3-dimethylamylamine
·         1,3-dimethylpentylamine
·         Pentylamine, 1, 3-dimethyl-

So should I be worried if the label only lists Geranium oil and no other synonyms?
Yes, Geranium oil (extract) is often used in place of Methylhexaneamine or 1, 3-dimethylamylamine because the general public views Geranium oil to be a ‘natural’ substance and thus ‘safe’.  Geranium is a nonessential trace element that has caused nephrotoxicity (kidney injury) and death when used chronically by humans, even at recommended levels of use.

What products do you commonly find these ingredients listed in?
The most common product that we receive questions on still remains to be Jack3d by USP Labs.  Jack3d, lists, [1, 3 Dimethylamylamine] and caffeine.  The following is a list of the top 10 product names, manufacture and banned (problematic) ingredients as listed on the label, in order of most popular.
1.           Jack3d – USPlabs (1,3 Dimethylamylamine (Geranium [Stem], caffeine)
2.           OxyELITE Pro – USPlabs (1,3 Dimethylamylamine(Geranium [Stem], caffeine)
3.           Hemo-Rage Black Ultra Concentrate – Nutrex (1,3 Dimethylamylamine)
4.           C4 Extreme - Cellucor (1,3 Dimethylamylamine HCI, caffeine)
5.           Rezolution – LG Sciences (1,3 Dimethylamylamine (Geranium Flower), Bitter Orange (synephrine), caffeine)
6.           Liquid Clenbutrx Hardcore – VPX (Apple Geranium (Pelargonium Odorantissomum) (Leaves) [Std. To 1,3-Dimethylpentylamine],caffeine)
7.           Heat Accelerated – Magnum Nutraceuticals (Geranium Oil Extract, Citrus Aurantium, caffeine)
8.           CryoShock – Neogenix (1,3 Dimethylamylamine, caffeine)
9.           RedLine Black On Blue V2 – VPX (Supra-Amine™ Apple Geranium (Pelargonium Odoratissimum) (Leaves) [Std. To 1,3-Dimethylpentylamine], caffeine)
10.       Motivate – Anabolic Innovations (1,3 Dimethylamylamine, caffeine)

Have you seen reports of individuals failing drug test because of Methylhexaneamine?
Yes, we have seen positive drug test in regards to Methylhexaneamine, and the numbers seem to be rising.  If you are using any of these supplements, please be aware that the presence of Methylhexaneamine will cause a positive drug test.

Please be advised that supplement use can be dangerous to your health and your eligibility.  The REC does not recommend the use of any dietary supplement and encourages athletes to turn to food first for their dietary needs. Athletes must remember that you are always 100% responsible for what you consume.