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What your body does to cannabis: pharmacokinetics

The pharmacokinetics of drugs can be broken down into roughly four phases, commonly referred to as Absorption, Distribution, Metabolism and Elimination (ADME). Absorption is the phase that happens immediately after administration, where the drug goes from the site of administration into the bloodstream. Once the drug is in the blood, it needs to be delivered throughout the body to sites of action and off-target site (usually associated with side effects). This process is known as distribution. In an effort to remove the drug/cannabis, the body metabolizes the drug to make it more water-soluble (hydrophilic), therefore making it easier to excrete. This usually happens in the liver. Once the drug/cannabis has been changed to a form that can easily be removed from the body, it is eliminated (i.e. excreted), for example via urine or feces. While the pharmacokinetics of THC are well known, there are limited data on other cannabinoids found in cannabis. Therefore, we will focus on the absorption, distribution, metabolism and elimination of THC. Watch a brief summary video on cannabis inhalation vs. cannabis ingestion made in collaboration with Enlighten on YouTube or on the screens page. pharmacokinetics adme