Module 2: Basic Pharmacology of Controlled Drugs and Substances
Cannabinoids are derived from the plant Cannabis sativa. In the past, most Cannabis products found in Canada were grown in South and Central America but much is now grown locally, some under hydroponic conditions. Cannabinoids in Canada are also available as delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (Sativex) and nabilone (Cesamet), both of which are forms of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), one of the active ingredients. These forms are controlled drugs and substances that are manufactured and standardized by pharmaceutical companies and defined with a drug identification number (DIN). Alternatively, medical marijuana (spelled marihuana in federal legislation and regulations) is not standardized and lacks the same rigorous controls of production and DIN. Medical marijuana in Canada is currently regulated by the Access to Cannabis for Medical Purposes Regulations (ACMPR), which were introduced to facilitate access to quality-controlled marijuana for medical purposes as well as to better control the production and sales of the product. This does not occur through typical pharmacy processes.