Cannabis sativa, Linne, or var.

indica, Lamarck.

The dried pistillate flowering tops, freed from thicker stems and large foliage leaves, with not more than 10 p. c. of fruits, foreign matter.

Habitat. Asia, Persia, hills of N. India; cultivated in India, Europe, C. and S. Russia, Brazil, W. and S. United States.

Syn. Cannab., Cannabis Indica, U. S. P. 1900, Guaza, Ganjah, Indian Hemp, Black Indian Hemp, Tristram's Knot, Bangue, Hashish, Halish, Gallow Grass Hemp, Neck or Nick Weed, St. Andrew's-lace, Welsh Parsley, Bang, Bhang, Gunjah Churrus, Charas, Ganja (dried flowers); Fr. Chanvre (Indien); Ger. Hanf, Indischer Hanf.

Can'na-bis. L. Gr.

Cannabis Cannabis 254

hemp, fr. ganeh, its Arabic name. Celtic can, reed +ab, small - i. e., its slender stems.

Sa-ti'va. L. sativus, that which is sown or planted - i. e., in the gardens and fields for use.

In'di-ca. L. Indicus. Gr.

Cannabis Cannabis 255

pertaining to India - i. e., its habitat.

Plants. - Annual herbs; stems 1-3 M. (3-10°) high, angular, tomentose; leaves palmate-compound; leaflets 5-7 linear-lanceolate, serrate; flowers dioecious, yellow spikes. Flowering tops, greenish-brown, compressed, agglutinated fragments 5 Cm. (2') long, consisting of short stems, bracts, and pistillate flowers, sometimes fruits; stems of varying length, 3 Mm. (1/8') thick, cylindrical, longitudinally furrowed strigose-pubescent; leaves digitately compound; leaflets linear-lanceolate, sessile, serrate; bracts ovate, pubescent, each enclosing 1-2 pistillate flowers or fruits; calyx dark green, pubescent, folded around ovary or fruit; styles 2, filiform, pubescent; ovule 1; fruit greenish-brown, ellipsoidal, 3.5 Mm. (1/7') long, wrinkled, slightly reticulate; odor agreeably aromatic; taste characteristic Powder, dark green, effervescing with dilute hydrochloric acid; microscopically - many sharp-pointed fragments of non-glandular hairs, bracts, leaves with laticiferous vessels, rosette aggregates of calcium oxalate, and calcium carbonate; glandular hairs 2 kinds; oil globules, aleurone grains (crystalloids, globoids); alcoholic solution bright green; alcoholic extractive 8 p. c. Should not be kept longer than 1 year, when it usually is only one-fourth as strong as the fresh, and in 2 years it practically is inert. Solvent: alcohol. Dose, gr. 1-5 (.06-.3 Gm.).

Commercial. - Plant was known to the Romans, but not to the Egyptians, and has been cultivated universally many centuries for fibre, seed, and medicine - that for the latter at present being grown mostly in the two districts, Bogra and Rajshabi, north of Calcutta, in rows, the richest in resin at 1,800-2,400 M. (6,000-8,000°) elevation. When mature (indicated by brown color and falling of leaves) the flowering branches are cut off, cured by wilting, pressing, rolling, and shaking out of leaves and fruits (if any of the latter have developed), and as such is recognized natively by the Hindustani names, ganja, gunjah; the rolling and treading are preformed by human feet, an art demanding training, the object being possibly to work resinous matter from stems into inflorescence tips. There are two kinds: 1, Round ganja, requiring 4 days for kneading each branch into a cylindrical or terete mass; 2, Flat ganja, requiring 2 days for working into a flat form; the Bengal (Calcutta) ganja (best) is brownish or dusty, the Bombay bright green. Variability in the drug may be due to the presence of staminate flowers, leaves, fruits, cold weather, inopportune collecting (not later than 4 days after maturing), intentional removal of resin, excessive age (losing most of its properties within a year). Great care is taken to prevent the flowering tops becoming fertilized by suppressing the male plants, as a single one is claimed to spoil an entire field; however, when for fibre or seeds both male and female plants are cultivated together. Our plant, often called Cannabis america'na, having escaped from native country, may possess slight variations owing to colder climate, but under proper cultivation and care may be as active as the India product, in spite of which it is regarded generally as being about one-fourth weaker.

Constituents. - Cannabinol, Cannabin 15-20 p. c, choline (bili-neurine - trimethylamine), volatile oil (chiefly sesquiterpene - canne-bene), C10H16, 3 p. c., bitter principle, paraffin, C29H60, chlorophyll, gum, sugar, potassium nitrate, ash 15 p. c.

Fig. 93.   Cannabis sativa.

Fig. 93. - Cannabis sativa.

Cannabinol, C21H26O2. - This, to which the activity of the drug is due, may be obtained by exhausting cannabis with petroleum benzin, reclaiming latter, evaporating residue to dryness, and subjecting it, under pressure to fractional distillation at 210-240° C. (410-464° F.), when the distillate contains cannabinol and paraffin, the latter being removed with alcohol. It is a poisonous, yellow or brownish syrupy liquid, darkening on exposure to air into inert, brittle, pitchy mass, consequently must be kept, as well as preparations of the drug, in scaled containers.

Cannabin. - Resin constituent (resinoid), to which formerly was attributed all of the drug's activity, that now known to be due solely to its contained cannabinol; it may be obtained by treating cannabis with water and a solution of sodium carbonate, washing residue with water, drying, exhausting with alcohol, treating tincture with milk of lime, precipitating lime with sulphuric acid, adding animal charcoal to filtrate, filtering, concentrating, and precipitating with water; it is a brown, amorphous resin, burning without ash, soluble in alcohol, ether, from the former being precipitated white by water.

Preparations. - 1. Extractum Cannabis. Extract of Cannabis. (Syn., Ext. Cannab., Extract of (Indian) Cannabis (Hemp); Fr. Extrait de Chanvre (Indien); Ger. (Indisch) Henfextrakt.)

Manufacture: Macerate, percolate 100 Gm. with alcohol until exhausted, reclaim alcohol, evaporate residue at 70° C. (158° F.), frequently stirring, to pilular consistence, mix thoroughly; after assay add enough glucose for biological standard; yield 12-14 p. c. Dose, gr. 1-1 (.01-.06 Gm.).

2. Fluidextractum Cannabis. Fluidextract of Cannabis. (Syn., Fldext. Cannab., Fluid Extract of Cannabis; Fr. Extrait fluide de Chanvre (Indien): Ger. (Indisch) Hanffluidextrakt.)

Manufacture: Similar to Fluidextractum Sabal, page 95; menstruum : alcohol; after dissolving soft extract in the reserve, assay and adjust finished volume to its biological standard - amount producing incoordination in a dog; gr. 1/2 (.03 Ml. (Cc.)) for every 2 pounds (1 Kg.) of body weight. Dose, ij-5 (.13-.3 Ml. (Cc.)).

3. Tinctura Cannabis. Tincture of Cannabis. (Syn., Tr. Cannab., Tinctura Cannabis Indica; Fr. Teinture de Chanvre Indien; Ger. (Indisch) Hanftinktur.)

Manufacture: 10 p. c. Similar to Tinctura Veratri Viridis, page 101; menstruum: alcohol. Dose, v-30 (.3-2 Ml. (Cc.)).

These preparations give varying results, but usually their value can be recognized by the color of the precipitate formed when added to water; if olive-green, it is active; if yellowish-brown, it is inert; thus, whatever there is that destroys chlorophyll injures the active principle.

Properties. - Anodyne, nervine, sudorific, narcotic, aphrodisiac, increases appetite. It excels even belladonna in perverting perception, condition, and relation of objects; some subjects become pugnacious, others have delightful intoxicating dreams, in which time, distance, and sound are magnified - a few minutes' dream extends over weeks, near objects as in infinite space, whispering as cannonading. Large habitual doses bloat the face, inject eyes, make limbs tremulous, weak, mind imbecilic, death by marasmus.

Uses. - Neuralgia, distressing cough, gout, delirium tremens, tetanus convulsions, chorea, hysteria, mental depression, epilepsy, morphine and chloral habits, softening of the brain, nervous vomiting.

Poisoning: Have pleasurable intoxication, double consciousness followed by drowsiness, unconsciousness, collapse, insensibility, dilated pupils, rapid pulse, slow respiration, debility, pale, clammy, insensitive skin, catalepsis, excited passion; effects usually last 24 hours, and closely resemble those of opium, differing, however, in not constipating and in not lessening secretions; increases appetite. Give emetics, lemon juice to neutralize its effects, tannin, coffee, ammonia, strychnine, atropine, electricity, spirit of nitrous ether, artificial respiration; similar to hydrated chloral and opium.

Incompatibles: Strychnine, caustic alkalies, acids.

Synergists: Alcohol, ether, bromides, cocaine, narcotics.

Allied Native Products:

These are mostly used for smoking, beverages, or electuaries, etc.