Cannabis is widely used recreationally and for symptomatic relief in a number of ailments. However, cannabis has been implicated
as a risk factor for the development of psychotic illness. For forty years researchers have utilised intravenous preparations of Δ9-
THC, as well as several other phytocannabinoids, in a laboratory setting. The intravenous route has the most reliable pharmacokinetics,
reducing inter-individual variation in bioavailability and is well suited for the delivery of synthetic compounds containing a sole pharmacological
moiety. Given the association between cannabinoids and psychotic illness, there has been a resurgence of interest in experimental
studies of cannabinoids in humans, and the intravenous route has been employed. Here in a critical review, we appraise the major
findings from recent intravenous cannabinoid studies in humans and trace the historical roots of this work back to the 1970’s.
Keywords: Cannabis, Intravenous, delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, delta-9-tetrahydrocannabivarin, cannabidiol, THC, psychotic illness, phytocannabinoids, pharmacokinetics, intravenous route.
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