Temporal indication of cannabis use by means of THC glucuronide determination.

Drug testing and analysis

PubMedID: 20355165

Mareck U, Haenelt N, Geyer H, Guddat S, Kamber M, Brenneisen R, Thevis M, Schänzer W. Temporal indication of cannabis use by means of THC glucuronide determination. Drug Test Anal. 2009;1(11-12):505-10.
According to the regulations of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), the use of cannabinoids is forbidden in competition. In doping controls, the detection of cannabinoid misuse is based on the analysis of the non-psychoactive metabolite 11-nor-9-carboxy-delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (carboxy-THC). The determination of values greater than 15 ng/mL in urine represents an adverse analytical finding; however, no accurate prediction of the time of application is possible as the half-life of carboxy-THC ranges between three and four days. Consequently the detection of carboxy-THC in doping control urine samples collected in competition might also result from cannabis use in out-of-competition periods. The analysis of the glucuronide of the pharmacologically active delta 9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC-gluc) may represent a complementary indicator for the detection of cannabis misuse in competition.An assay for the determination of THC-gluc in human urine was established. The sample preparation consisted of liquid-liquid extraction of urine specimens, and extracts were analysed by liquid chromatography/tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). Authentic doping-control urine samples as well as specimens obtained from a controlled smoking study were analysed and assay characteristics such as specificity, detection limit (0.1 ng/mL), precision (>90%), recovery ( approximately 80%), and extraction efficiency (90%) were determined.