Breathalyzer to Detect Marijuana Use Ramping Up Production


Tests for marijuana use rely on a sample (urine, blood, saliva, hair), and the final results of these tests indicate historical marijuana use. A little business in Oakland, California, has created a breathalyzer that functions like an alcohol breathalyzer to measure marijuana use inside a 3-hour window.

The business, Hound Labs, has completed two clinical trials of its device at the University of California-San Francisco (UCSF). Final February, UCSF researchers determined that the company’s breathalyzer could detect Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC, the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana) in concentrations as little as 1 picogram (a trillionth of a gram) up to 3 hours following smoking.

In a peer-reviewed short article published in Clinical Chemistry in July, Dr. Kara Lynch, an associate professor of laboratory medicine at UCSF and co-director of San Francisco Basic Hospital’s clinical chemistry and toxicology laboratory, reported that THC “was detected in exhaled breath for all folks at baseline by means of three h[ours] following cannabis use. THC concentrations in breath have been highest at the 15-min[ute] timepoint (median = 17.eight pg/L) and declined to &lt5% of this concentration in all participants three h following smoking. The decay curve kinetics observed for blood and breath have been very correlated inside folks and across the population.”

The 3-hour window for the duration of which the breathalyzer is capable to detect marijuana use matches up with other research that showed impaired behavior from marijuana customers is at its peak inside that similar window. According to a National Highway Site visitors Security Administration report on the influence of marijuana on human efficiency, a single hit of marijuana smoke can carry about one particular-twentieth of a gram of THC, far extra than the new breathalyzer requirements to figure out impairment.

In August, Hound Labs announced a $30 million Series D funding round, and the business stated it plans to use the funds to “accelerate manufacturing and industrial availability.” Given that its founding in 2014, the business has raised $73.1 million in funding, according to Crunchbase.

Marijuana is legal for recreational and healthcare use in 11 states and the District of Columbia. Only 3 of these states have a legal limit for the tested quantity of THC in somebody suspected of impaired driving. That limit is five nanograms (ng, billionths of a gram) in Colorado and Washington and two ng in Nevada.

3 other states exactly where healthcare marijuana use is legal have established THC limits. Montana has set a limit of five ng, although Ohio’s limit is 2ng and Pennsylvania’s is 1 ng.

No other state, such as California, has but established a legal limit on how considerably THC constitutes a presumption of impaired driving.

Hound Labs is pitching its device to law enforcement departments and employers who need to have to know no matter whether somebody has been making use of marijuana quite lately, not no matter whether the substance was applied days ago. One particular can picture a delivery service, a trucking or building business, or an airline requiring drivers, gear operators and pilots to blow a clean test just before hitting the road or the skies.

24/7 Wall St. lately issued its list of the 25 most risky drugs. 


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