Glossary

Welcome to the web’s most comprehensive and largest glossary of definitions and terminology for Personalized Medicine, Pharmacogenetics, and Medical Cannabis.

Dive in deeply because the more you understand, the more knowledgeable you become to understand and better manage your personal health.


General Terms and Medical Cannabis


  • Anabolism/Anabolic

    Metabolic process in which complex molecules are synthesized from simpler ones with the storage of energy; constructive metabolism

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    Anabolism/Anabolic
  • Anandamide

    Our body’s “self-produced cannabis”, first discovered in 1992. It’s an endocannabinoid or endogenous ligand to the cannabinoid receptor. A neurotransmitter, C22H37NO2, found especially in the brain, that binds to the same receptors as cannabinoids and influences mood, appetite, motivation, perception of pain and pleasure, and memory. Anandamide is found in small amounts in cocoa and chocolate.

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    Anandamide
  • Cannabidiol (CBD)

    Cannabidiol (CBD) is the major non-psychotropic cannabinoid found in Cannabis. It has shown anti-epileptic, anti-inflammatory, anti-emetic, muscle relaxing, anxiolytic, neuroprotective and anti-psychotic activity and reduces the psychoactive effects of THC. The mode of action of cannabidiol is not fully understood and several mechanisms have been proposed, including an antagonistic action at the CB1 receptor.

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    Cannabidiol (CBD)
  • Cannabinoid Deficiency

    Researchers have found that many diseases, like multiple sclerosis and fibromyalgia, may be caused by a simple deficiency of endogenous (internally produced) cannabinoids (also called “endocannabinoids”).

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    Cannabinoid Deficiency
  • Cannabinoid Receptor

    Several cells in the brain and other organs contain specific protein receptors that recognize THC and some other cannabinoids and trigger cell responses. Other cannabinoids do not bind to these cannabinoid receptors and exert their effects by other ways.

    The discovery of specific cannabinoid receptors prompted the search for putative naturally-occurring chemicals that interact with the receptors, the endocannabinoids. There are at least two cannabinoid receptor types, CB1 receptors, and CB2 receptors. CB1 receptors are found in high concentrations within the brain and spinal cord.

    They are also present in certain peripheral cells and tissues (some neurons, some endocrine glands, leukocytes, spleen, heart and parts of the reproductive, urinary and gastrointestinal tracts).

    CB2 receptors are expressed primarily by immune cells and tissues (leukocytes, spleen and tonsils) but are also found in the brain.

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    Cannabinoid Receptor
  • CB1

    CB1 is the cannabinoid receptor type 1, a G protein-coupled cannabinoid receptor located primarily in the central and peripheral nervous system. It is activated by the endocannabinoid neurotransmitters anandamide and 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG); by plant cannabinoids, such as the compound THC, an active ingredient of the psychoactive drug cannabis; and by synthetic analogues of THC.

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    CB1
  • CB2

    The cannabinoid receptor type 2, abbreviated as CB2, is a G protein-coupled receptor from the cannabinoid receptor family that in humans is encoded by the CNR2 gene. It is closely related to the cannabinoid receptor type 1, which is largely responsible for the efficacy of endocannabinoid-mediated presynaptic-inhibition, the psychoactive properties of tetrahydrocannabinol, the active agent in cannabis, and other phytocannabinoids (natural cannabinoids). The principal endogenous ligand for the CB2 receptor is 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG).]

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    CB2
  • Cannabinoids

    Cannabinoids are the natural substances found in cannabis plants that have medicinal applications. They include all chemicals that bind to cannabinoid receptors. The endogenous ligands of the cannabinoid receptors are named “endocannabinoids”. Over 100 cannabinoids have been identified. OnlyYOU provides test results for how you metabolize the primary cannabinoids. These cannabinoids are the key components which are known to provide medicinal benefits.

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    Cannabinoids
  • Cannabis

    Cannabis Sativa L. is the botanical name and Latin binomial of hemp. Until now, there are more than 500 different identifiable chemical constituents known to exist in cannabis. Only a part of these compounds exists in one plant. The most distinctive and specific class of compounds are the cannabinoids (more than 100 known). Other constituents of the cannabis plant are: nitrogenous compounds, amino acids, proteins, glycoproteins, enzymes, sugars and related compounds, hydrocarbons, simple alcohols, aldehydes, ketones, simple acids, fatty acids, simple esters, lactones, steroids, terpenes, non-cannabinoid phenols, flavonoids, vitamins and pigments, elements. The very most of these compounds are found in other plants and animals and are not of pharmacological relevance with regard to the effects exerted by cannabis preparations.

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    Cannabis
  • Catabolism/ Catabolic

    Catabolic reactions are a type of metabolic reaction that take place within a cell. Catabolism is the opposite of anabolism which involves the synthesis of large molecules from smaller molecules and is endergonic as energy is used out.

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    Catabolism/ Catabolic
  • CDC

    Center for Disease Control

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    CDC
  • Chemovar

    “Strain” is the most common misused word in the world of cannabis. The correct (non-marketing) word which should be used is “chemovar”. A chemovar (sometimes chemotype) is a chemically distinct entity in a plant or microorganism, with differences in the composition of the secondary metabolites. Minor genetic and epigenetic changes with little or no effect on morphology or anatomy may produce large changes in the chemical phenotype.

    The medicinal use of Cannabis is increasing as countries worldwide are setting up official programs to provide patients with access to safe sources of medicinal-grade Cannabis. An important question that remains to be answered is which of the many varieties of Cannabis should be made available for medicinal use. Drug varieties of Cannabis are commonly distinguished through the use of popular names, with a major distinction being made between Indica and Sativa types. Although more than 700 different cultivars have already been described, it is unclear whether such classification reflects any relevant differences in chemical composition. Some attempts have been made to classify Cannabis varieties based on chemical composition, but they have mainly been useful for forensic applications, distinguishing drug varieties, with high THC content, from the non-drug hemp varieties. The biologically active terpenoids have not been included in these approaches. For a clearer understanding of the medicinal properties of the Cannabis plant, a better classification system, based on a range of potentially active constituents, is needed. The cannabinoids and terpenoids, present in high concentrations in Cannabis flowers, are the main candidates. In this study, we compared cultivars obtained from multiple sources. Based on the analysis of 28 major compounds present in these samples, followed by principal component analysis (PCA) of the quantitative data, we were able to identify the Cannabis constituents that defined the samples into distinct chemovar groups. The study indicates the usefulness of a PCA approach for chemotaxonomic classification of Cannabis varieties. See: cultivar; strain

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    Chemovar
  • Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA)

    Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA) of 1988, established quality standards for all laboratory testing to ensure the accuracy, reliability and timeliness of patient test results regardless of where the test was performed. The FDA and CDC use and endorse CLIA guidelines for labs to be certified for testing human samples.

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    Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA)
  • Cultivar

    Cultivar is sometimes used by cultivation experts in lieu of “strain” or “chemovar”. The term cultivar most commonly refers to an assemblage of plants selected for desirable characteristics that are maintained during propagation. More generally, cultivar refers to the most basic classification category of cultivated plants governed by the ICNCP (International Code of Nomenclature for Cultivated Plants). Most cultivars have arisen in cultivation, but a few are special selections from the wild.

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    Cultivar
  • Delivery System

    When it comes to cannabis consumption, the second-most important consideration, after the flower itself, is the delivery method.

    There are three basic delivery methods: inhalation, oral, and topical. Under these umbrella methods are various techniques that serve unique functions, each appropriate for different uses.

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    Delivery System
  • Direct-to-Consumer (DTC)

    Direct-to-consumer (DTC). OnlyYOU® Genetics sells pharmacogenetic tests exclusively to consumers to provide them with the lowest cost and easiest way to get their personalized report.

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    Direct-to-Consumer (DTC)
  • Dispensary

    Specially designated stores where legal medical cannabis is sold.

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    Dispensary
  • Dosage

    The size or frequency of an amount of or dose of a medicine or drug.

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    Dosage
  • Dronabinol (Marinol)

    Dronabinol is used to treat nausea and vomiting caused by cancer chemotherapy. It is usually used when other drugs to control nausea and vomiting have not been successful. Dronabinol is also used to treat loss of appetite and weight loss in patients with HIV infection. Oral capsules containing THC synthetically manufactured dronabinol are available under the name Marinol.

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    Dronabinol (Marinol)
  • Drug Interaction

    Situation in which a substance (usually another drug) affects the activity of a drug when both are administered together. This action can be synergistic (when the drug’s effect is increased) or antagonistic (when the drug’s effect is decreased) or a new effect can be produced that neither produces on its own.

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    Drug Interaction
  • Drug Metabolism

    Process by which the body breaks down and converts medication into active chemical substances. Most drug metabolism occurs in the liver, although some processes occur in the gut wall, lungs and blood plasma. Overall, metabolic processes will convert the drug into a more water-soluble compound by increasing its polarity.

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    Drug Metabolism
  • Drug Response

    Reaction of the body to an administered drug. It is affected by many factors, including genetic makeup, which controls your drug metabolism, age, body size, the use of other drugs and dietary supplements (such as medicinal herbs, the consumption of food (including beverages), the presence of diseases (such as kidney or liver disease), and the development of tolerance and resistance.

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    Drug Response
  • Endocannabinoids

    Endocannabinoids are the body’s natural THC. Endocannabinoids received their name from cannabis. Plant cannabinoids were discovered first. “Endo” means within, and “cannabinoid” referring to a compound that fits into cannabinoid receptors.

    Endocannabinoids are the chemical messengers that tell your body to get critical functioning processes moving, and when to stop. They help maintain optimal balance in the body, also known as homeostasis. When the ECS (Endocannabinoid System) is disrupted, any one of these things can fall out of balance. Dysregulation in the ECS is thought to contribute to a wide variety of conditions, including fibromyalgia and irritable bowel syndrome.

    Endocannabinoids are produced by the body of humans and animals for the purpose of critical functioning:

    • Sleep
    • Appetite, digestion, hunger
    • Mood
    • Motor control
    • Immune function
    • Reproduction and fertility
    • Pleasure and reward
    • Pain
    • Memory
    • Temperature regulation

    Cannabinoid receptors are found all throughout the body, giving them a wide variety of functions. However, certain receptors are more concentrated in specific regions. CB1 receptors are abundant in the central nervous system. CB2 receptors are more often found on immune cells, in the gastrointestinal tract, and in the peripheral nervous system.

    There are two endocannabinoids: 2-archidonoylglycerol (2-AG) and anandamide.
    The endogenous ligands of the cannabinoid receptors have been termed endogenous cannabinoids or endocannabinoids.

    The endocannabinoid system (ECS) refers to a collection of cell receptors and corresponding molecules. Consider cell receptors like little locks on the surface of everyone’s cells. The keys to these locks are chemical molecules called agonists. Each time an agonist binds to a cell it relays a message, giving your cell specific direction.

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    Endocannabinoids
  • Endogenous

    If your doctor says your sickness is ‘endogenous’, they mean that whatever’s wrong with you went wrong inside your body, and wasn’t caused by anything you can catch, like a virus. Endogenous is a fancy term for anything that originates internally. The endogenous cannabinoids are called endocannabinoids.

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    Endogenous
  • Entourage Effect - Ensemble Effect

    Phrase introduced in cannabinoid science in 1998 by S. Ben-Shabat, with Raphael Mechoulam, to represent a novel endogenous cannabinoid molecular regulation route. Biological activity assayed together with inactive compounds. References whole plant and whole person caregiver synergy treatments over isolated compound pharmacological dosages.

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    Entourage Effect - Ensemble Effect
  • Evidence-Based

    The approach to medical practice intended to optimize decision-making by emphasizing the use of solid factual evidence from well-designed and published scientific medical research.

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    Evidence-Based
  • FAAH (Fatty Acid Amide Hydrolase)

    An important enzyme which possesses the ability to hydrolyze (i.e., break down by water) a range of fatty acid amides including anandamide (our body’s natural production of cannabis) which serves as a messenger molecule playing a role in pain, depression, appetite, memory and fertility), and serves as the endogenous ligand for the cannabinoid receptor.

    FAAH has is often referred to as the “feel-good” gene due to its ability to affect our mood and overall happiness. Changes in FAAH have been scientifically linked to alterations in the way people react to cannabis exposure. Specifically, people who have two copies of the C allele experience an increase in happiness after exposure and more severe withdrawal symptoms when they are abstinent, compared to people carrying either one or two copies of the A allele. It is thought that people with the C/C genotype may be at greater risk of becoming dependent on cannabis.

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    FAAH (Fatty Acid Amide Hydrolase)
  • FDA

    Food and Drug Administration. Operated by the US government to test and provide guidelines and set rigid standards for all food, pharmaceuticals, testing, labeling, etc. to protect consumers.

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    FDA
  • Hashish

    Arabic name for cannabis resin or compressed resin glands, containing 5-20% or even more THC.

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    Hashish
  • Hemp

    Hemp (Cannabis sativa L.) is an annual plant, normally dioecious, with male and female flowers developing on separate plants. Depending on THC and CBD content hemp can be divided into fiber and drug types. There are regional differences in the employment of the terms cannabis, hemp and marijuana. In the USA and Canada the term “hemp” is usually only applied to fiber hemp in contrast to the term “marijuana”, while in many regions of Europe hemp (“Hanf”) can be applied to drug types as well (in the sense of the old term “Indian hemp”).

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    Hemp
  • HIPAA

    HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996) is United States legislation that provides data privacy and security provisions for safeguarding medical information. OnlyYOU® Genetics uses all HIPAA guidelines, including our HIPAA Business Associates.

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    HIPAA
  • Informed Consent

    Also known as “consent process”. The process of information exchange between a clinician and an individual or their legal proxy designed to facilitate autonomous, informed decision making. The informed consent process for genetic testing should include an explanation of the medical and psychosocial risks, benefits, limitations, and potential implications of genetic analysis, a discussion of privacy, confidentiality, the documentation and handling of genetic test results, as well as options for managing the hereditary disease risk.

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    Informed Consent
  • Label Recommendation

    All medicines are required to meet the labeling requirements of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act.

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    Label Recommendation
  • Ligand

    A ligand binds to a specific receptor. The ligands of the cannabinoid receptor are called cannabinoids. The endogenous ligands of the cannabinoid receptor are called endocannabinoids.

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    Ligand
  • Marijuana

    AKA, “cannabis”. Marijuana (marihuana) is a colloquial name for dried leaves and flowers of drug cannabis varieties rich in THC (1-30+% THC).

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    Marijuana
  • Marinol

    Marinol® (Solvay Pharmaceuticals, Belgium) is a preparation of synthetic dronabinol, dissolved in sesame oil, as capsules of 2.5, 5, and 10 mg dronabinol. Used to treat severe nausea and vomiting caused by cancer chemotherapy, and to promote appetite for AIDS patients. (Approved by FDA)

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    Marinol
  • Median Effective Dose

    The dose required to achieve 50% of the desired response in 50% of the population.

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    Median Effective Dose
  • Nabilone/Cesamet

    Nabilone/Cesamet (made by Meda Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and others) is a synthetic derivative of delta-9-THC with a slightly modified molecular structure, FDA-approved and available in some countries by prescription in an oral pill or capsule.

    In Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom and Mexico, Nabilone is marketed as Cesamet®.

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    Nabilone/Cesamet
  • Neurotransmitter

    Chemical substance released at the end of a nerve fiber by the arrival of a nerve impulse and, by diffusing across the synapse or junction, causes the transfer of the impulse to another nerve fiber, a muscle fiber, or some other structure.

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    Neurotransmitter
  • NIH

    NIH (National Institute of Health) is an agency of the United States Department of Health and Human Services, it is the primary agency of the United States government responsible for biomedical and health-related research. The NIH both conducts its own scientific research through its Intramural Research Program (IRP) and provides major biomedical research funding to non-NIH research facilities through its Extramural Research Program.

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    NIH
  • Off-Label Drug Use (OLDU)

    The most common form of OLDU (Off-Label Drug Use) involves prescribing currently available and marketed medications for an indication (i.e. a disease or a symptom) that has never received FDA approval.

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    Off-Label Drug Use (OLDU)
  • Patient Portal

    Your test results will be filed in our fully secured, encrypted HIPAA compliant “portal” on the OnlyYOU Genetics website. Accessible only to account holders with your username and a passcode for your individual account.

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    Patient Portal
  • Personalized Medicine

    Tailoring of medical treatment to an individual’s personal characteristics, needs and preferences during all stages of care, including prevention, diagnosis, treatment and follow-up. Another simplified version of personalized medicine is providing the right patient with the right drug at the right dose at the right time. “Precision Medicine” is sometimes used interchangeably with “Personalized Medicine”. Personalized Medicine generally involves the use of two medical products – typically, a diagnostic device and a therapeutic product – such as a drug to improve patient outcomes.

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    Personalized Medicine
  • Polypharmacy

    The simultaneous use of multiple drugs to treat a single ailment or condition and the simultaneous use of multiple drugs by a single patient, for one or more conditions.

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    Polypharmacy
  • Precision Medicine

    National Institutes of Health definition of Precision Medicine: “The emerging approach for disease prevention and treatment that takes into account people’s individual variations in genes, environment, and lifestyle”. It is often interchangeably used with “personalized medicine”. Use the link below to learn more.

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    Precision Medicine
  • Precision Medicine Initiative/ ''All of Us''

    President Obama announced the Precision Medicine Initiative® (PMI) in his 2015 State of the Union address. The Precision Medicine Initiative name changed in early 2017 to “All of Us”.

    Through advances in research, technology and policies that empower patients, the PMI will enable a new era of medicine in which researchers, providers and patients work together to develop individualized care. The President called for $215 million in fiscal year 2016 to support the Initiative, which includes several components with efforts from across the federal government. Of this total proposed budget, $130 million was allocated to NIH to build a national, large-scale research participant group, called a cohort, and $70 million was allocated to the National Cancer Institute to lead efforts in cancer genomics as part of PMI for Oncology. The Precision Medicine Initiative name changed in early 2017 to “All of Us”.

    Click ‘Learn More’ to learn how the U.S. Government is attempting to catch up with China, France and other countries who have realized the high priority for precision medicine.

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    Precision Medicine Initiative/ ''All of Us''
  • Receptor

    In biochemistry, a protein molecule that receives and responds to a neurotransmitter, or other substance.

    Cannabinoid receptors play a host of vital roles in our bodies. Receptors are found in: nerve tissue, lung, liver, intestine, kidney, lymphatic tissue, and the spleen, the CB1 and CB2 receptors play roles in our immune system and blood formation functions. Other processes they control include cognition, memory, anxiety, motor behavior, sensory, autonomic and neuroendocrine responses, Glucose metabolism and insulin resistance, inflammatory effects, control of the vomiting reflex, nausea, hunger, and appetite control.

    This system is also responsible for the pleasure we get from exercise, commonly known as the runner’s high, previously believed to be caused by endorphins.

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    Receptor
  • Rx

    Abbreviation for “Prescription Drug”

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    Rx
  • Sativex

    Sativex® (GW Pharmaceuticals, UK) is a cannabis-based pharmaceutical product containing delta 9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD) in a 1:1 ratio, delivered in an oromucosal (into the mouth) spray. Because of the use of whole extracts, non-standardized amounts of ballast components are also present, such as minor cannabinoids and terpenoids. Sativex has been approved in Canada as adjunctive treatment for neuropathic pain in adults with multiple sclerosis (MS) and in cancer pain. Registration is pending in several European countries. Expected to be approved or denied by the FDA for USA sales sometime in 4Q 2017 or 1Q 2018.

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    Sativex
  • Side Effect

    About Rx: Side effects, whether therapeutic or adverse, which are secondary to the one intended; although the term is predominantly employed to describe adverse (negative) effects, it can also apply to beneficial, but unintended, consequences of the use of a drug. Occasionally, drugs are prescribed or procedures performed specifically for their side effects; in that case, said side effect ceases to be a side effect, and then becomes an intended effect.

    About Cannabis: Phytocannabinoids differ in their psycho-activity; e.g., cannabinol (CBN) is approximately 90% less psycho-active than Δ9-THC, whereas cannabidiol(CBD) completely lacks psycho-activity. The main adverse effects are: dysphoria, memory impairment, reduced concentration, disorientation, and motor incoordination.

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    Side Effect
  • Strain

    “Strains” is meant to identify different kinds of cannabis flower. It’s primarily a marketing/sales approach which attempts to use distinctively creative names to distinguish themselves. Strain names run into the 1,000s; a curious mix of words and numbers, with no naming or classication standardization; names are simply invented by the original grower and/or retailer.

    The more accurate term to use instead of strain is: chemovar

    Because cannabis is undergoing a sea change of new realities (legally, useage and scientifically-studied) reliability about a particular strain’s contents (i.e, it’s cannabinoid ratios, percentage and types of terpenes and others) many cannabis and medical professionals are trying to develop a more uniform testing, naming and quality control identification system (i.e,naming).

    For now, it’s easiest to continue using “strain” to indicate the particulart cannabis products you want to identify.

    There is a large disparity between the cultural language (strain) used by patients using cannabis for self-medication (or, anyone using cannabis for recreational purposes) and the “chemical” language applied by scientists and cananbis-educated healthcare professionals to get a deeper understanding of cannabis effects in laboratory and clinical studies. The distinction between Sativa and Indica types of cannabis, and the different biological effects associated with them, is a major example of this. Despite the widespread use of cannabis, scientific studies are yet to identify the biochemical markers that can sufficiently explain differences between cannabis varieties.

    The scientific debate about classification of the cannabis species has been going on for centuries. According to current scientific consensus, Cannabis is monotypic and consists only of a single species Cannabis sativa L., as originally described by Leonard Fuchs in the 16th century. Within this species, two important subdivisions are commonly made. One of them recognizes drug-type versus fiber-type cannabis based on the intended use of the plant, and is mostly relevant for legal purposes. The other subdivision is based on botanical principles and identifies Sativa versus Indica types of cannabis, both regarded as a subspecies of Cannabis sativa L.

    According to the botanical description of cannabis, Sativa types of cannabis were originally grown in the Western world on an industrial scale for fiber, oil, and animal feedstuff. They are characterized by tall growth with few, widely spaced, branches and long, thin leaves. In contrast, plants of the Indica type originated in South Asia and were known historically as Indian hemp. They are characterized by shorter bushy plants and broader leaves, typically maturing relatively fast. The two groups tend to have a different smell, which may reflect a different profile of fragrant terpenes. Most cannabis plants that are currently commercially available are in fact a hybrid (cross-breed) of Sativa and Indica ancestors. Cannabis-type ruderalis is sometimes also recognized as a separate subspecies. It is a smaller and “weedy” plant originally from Central Russia.

    Various scientific attempts have been made to classify cannabis plants based on their cannabinoid composition. For forensic and legal purposes, the most important classification is that of the drug type (cannabis) versus the fiber type (hemp), with an emphasis on the total THC content in the flowers of the plant. Until recently, cannabis products used for medicinal purposes in official programs all belonged to the drug type, because of their high content of the biologically active THC. However, it is becoming increasingly scientifically validated that multiple constituents may be involved in the overall effect of the drug (i.e, the Entourage Effect). This includes the cannabinoids: CBD, CBG, CBN, CBDA and THCV, as well as a variety of terpenes.

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    Strain
  • Terpene

    Terpenes are common constituents of flavorings and fragrances. Terpenes, unlike cannabinoids, are responsible for the aroma of cannabis. The FDA has generally recognized terpenes as “safe.” Terpenes act on receptors and neurotransmitters, and are prone to join with or dissolve in lipids or fats. Terpenes act as serotonin uptake inhibitors (like antidepressants like Prozac), which enhance norepinephrine activity (similar to tricyclic antidepressants such as Elavil); they increase dopamine activity; and they augment GABA (the “downer” neurotransmitter that counters glutamate, which is the “upper”). More specific research is needed for improved accuracy in describing and predicting how terpenes in cannabis can be used medicinally to help treat specific ailments / health conditions; and, have not yet been included in any pharmacogenetic testing. Dr. Ethan Russo has provided scientific evidence demonstrating that non-cannabinoid plant components such as terpenes serve as inhibitors to THC’s intoxicating effects, thereby increasing THC’s therapeutic index. This “phytocannabinoid-terpenoid synergy,” (as Russo describes this), increases the potential of cannabis-based medicinal extracts to treat pain, inflammation, fungal and bacterial infections, depression, anxiety, addiction, epilepsy and even cancer

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    Terpene
  • THC

    THC or delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol, is the chemical responsible for most of marijuana’s psychological effects such as euphoria. Some THC must be present in medical cannabis as part of the entourage effect. In larger doses THC has been found to have medical benefits such as: shrinking tumors, reduction of pain, PTSD, and for many more conditions.

    See: http://www.leafscience.com/2014/07/22/7-proven-medical-benefits-thc/

    THC usually refers to the naturally existing isomer of delta-9-THC, but also may include delta-8-THC. Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol and delta-1-tetrahydrocannabinol are two names for the same molecule according to different numbering systems (monoterpenoid and dibenzopyran nomenclature). Generally the natural (-)-trans-isomer of delta-9-THC of the cannabis plant, the (-)-delta-9-trans-tetrahydrocannabinol or Dronabinol is designated. Chemically, delta-9-THC is defined as (6aR-trans)-6a, 7, 8, 10a-tetrahy-dro6,6, 9-trimethyl-3-pentyl-6H-dibenzo[b,d]pyran-1-ol with a molecular weight of 314.47 Da.

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    THC
  • Trial and Error

    Trial and error is a fundamental method of problem solving commonly used in employing scientific methodology. It is characterized by repeated, varied attempts which are continued until success, or until the person or provider stops trying.

    For medications, medical schools advocate trying drugs at smallest doses first to see how they may work for you, then testing to view results, increasing doses as needed or determining and prescribing other types of medications that may work better.

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    Trial and Error
  • Whole-genome Sequencing

    A laboratory process that is used to determine nearly all of the approximately 3 billion nucleotides of an individual’s complete DNA sequence, including non-coding sequence.

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    Whole-genome Sequencing
 

Pharmacogenetics


  • Adverse Reaction

    In pharmacology, any unexpected or dangerous reaction to a drug. An unwanted effect caused by the administration of a drug. The onset of the adverse reaction may be sudden or develop over time. Adverse reactions can lead to other illnesses, side effects, hospitalizations and even death.

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    Adverse Reaction
  • Allele

    One of two or more forms of a single gene. Each person inherits two alleles for each gene, one from each parent.

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    Allele
  • Assay

    The procedure for measuring the biochemical or immunological activity of a sample.

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    Assay
  • Base Pair

    Two nucleotides on complementary DNA strands. Human DNA consists of about 3 billion base pairs, and more than 99% of those are the same in all people. The order, or sequence, of these base pairs determines the information available for building and maintaining an organism.

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    Base Pair
  • Chromosomes

    A single strand of tightly coiled DNA that reside in pairs within the nucleus. Humans have 22 autosomal chromosomes (named as 1 to 22) and two sex chromosomes, X and Y.

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    Chromosomes
  • Cytochrome P450

    These are drug-metabolizing enzymes, commonly known as CYP which are found in the liver and are responsible for the metabolism of a large number of pharmaceutical compounds. Expression of each CYP is influenced by a unique combination of mechanisms and factors including genetic polymorphisms, induction by xenobiotics, regulation by cytokines, hormones and during disease states, as well as sex, age, and others. Multiallelic genetic polymorphisms, which strongly depend on ethnicity, play a major role for the function of CYPs and leading to distinct pharmacogenetic phenotypes termed as poor, intermediate, extensive, and ultra-rapid metabolizers.

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    Cytochrome P450
  • Deletion

    When one or more nucleotide pairs are lost from a DNA molecule.

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    Deletion
  • Deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA)

    Consists of nucleotides that reside in sequence along a backbone of deoxyribose sugar and phosphates. DNA contains the genetic instructions that program development and mature structure and function of individuals.

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    Deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA)
  • Duplication

    The presence of an extra segment of DNA, resulting in redundant copies of a portion of a gene, an entire gene, or a series of genes.

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    Duplication
  • Enzyme

    A biological catalyst, usually a protein, which speeds up the rate of a specific chemical reaction. The body contains thousands of different enzyme molecules, each specific to a particular chemical reaction.

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    Enzyme
  • Enzyme Inhibitor

    A molecule that binds to an enzyme and decreases its activity.

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    Enzyme Inhibitor
  • Epigenetics

    The study of heritable changes that do not affect the DNA sequence but influence gene expression.

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    Epigenetics
  • Exons

    The expressed portion of a gene, exons contain the DNA sequences that are converted to mRNA during transcription, and thus by way of the genetic code, determine the amino acid sequence in the protein product. A nucleotide sequence that is found in a gene, codes information for protein synthesis, which is transcribed to messenger RNA.

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    Exons
  • Family History

    The genetic relationships within a family combined with the medical history of individual family members. When represented in diagram form using standardized symbols and terminology, it is usually referred to as a pedigree or family tree. Also called family medical history.

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    Family History
  • Gene

    The physical and functional unit of DNA that controls your metabolism and utilization of drugs. Genes contain the instructions that help determine how the body develops and how it functions. 93% of people have gene variations.

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    Gene
  • Genetic Counseling

    A communication process that seeks to assist affected or at-risk individuals and families in understanding the natural history, disease risks, and mode of transmission of a genetic disorder; to facilitate informed consent for genetic testing when appropriate; to discuss options for risk management and family planning; and to provide for or refer individuals for psychosocial support as needed.

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    Genetic Counseling
  • Genetic Counselor

    Genetic counseling is the process by which the patients or relatives at risk of an inherited disorder are advised of the consequences and nature of the disorder, the probability of developing or transmitting it, and the options open to them in management and family planning.

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    Genetic Counselor
  • Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA)

    Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA); the Act of Congress in the United States designed to prohibit the use of genetic information in health insurance and employment. The Act prohibits group health plans and health insurers from denying coverage to a healthy individual or charging that person higher premiums based solely on a genetic predisposition to developing a disease in the future. The legislation also bars employers from using individuals’ genetic information when making hiring, firing, job placement, or promotion decisions.

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    Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act  (GINA)
  • Genetic Testing

    Genetic testing designed for pharmacogenetic testing is used to measure drug metabolism and responses. Also may identify individuals in a given population who are at higher risk of having or developing a particular disorder, or carrying a gene for a particular disorder.

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    Genetic Testing
  • Genetics

    Refers to the study of genes and their roles in inheritance - in other words, the way that certain traits or conditions are passed down from one generation to another. Genetics involves scientific studies of genes and their effects. Genes (units of heredity) carry the instructions for making proteins, which direct the activities of cells and functions of the body, including your metabolism for drugs.

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    Genetics
  • Genome

    The set of all genes that specify traits in an individual. A genome is an organism’s complete set of genetic instructions. Each genome contains all of the information needed to build that organism and allow it to grow and develop.

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    Genome
  • Genotype

    Broadly, an individual’s collection of genes. In pharmacogenetics, the genotype is a particular DNA composition within a gene of interest. Its expression contributes to the individual’s observable traits, called a phenotype.

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    Genotype
  • Genotypic Screening

    Testing that reveals the specific alleles inherited by an individual.

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    Genotypic Screening
  • Heterozygosity

    When two different alleles are present on the chromosome pair. Watch the video by clicking on “Learn More”.

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    Heterozygosity
  • Homozygosity

    When two identical alleles are present on the chromosome pair. Click on “Learn More” to see a video.

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    Homozygosity
  • Informational

    Not metabolically measurable, but important information about a certain drug, Use for learning about documented drug interactions, inhibitors, and potential adverse reactions and toxicities. In genetic testing, a test result that reveals definitively the presence or absence of a genetic alteration.

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    Informational
  • Inhibitor

    Inhibitors interact with enzymes in some way to prevent them from doing their jobs. Can cause lowered or lack of drug efficacy (effectiveness), create potential adverse reactions, etc. Think of an inhibitor as a drug’s way of saying “Slow down!” or “Stop!”

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    Inhibitor
  • Interactions

    In medicine, most medications can be safely used with other medicines, but particular combinations of medicines need to be monitored for interactions, often by the pharmacist. Interactions between medications (drug interactions) fall generally into one of two main categories:

    • “pharmacodynamic” which involves the actions of the two interacting drugs, and/or
    • “pharmacokinetic”, which involves the absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion of one or both of the interacting drugs upon the other.

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    Interactions
  • Locus

    The physical site or location of a specific gene on a chromosome. A locus (plural loci) in genetics is the position on a chromosome. Each chromosome carries many genes; humans estimated haploid protein coding genes are 19,000-20,000, on the 23 different chromosomes. A variant of the similar DNA sequence located at a given locus is called an “allele”.

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    Locus
  • Metabolic Pathways

    In biochemistry, a metabolic pathway is a linked series of chemical reactions occurring within a cell.

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    Metabolic Pathways
  • Metabolic

    Drugs that are metabolized in the liver, brain or specific areas of the body where specific genes are involved in metabolizing the drug for your use.

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    Metabolic
  • Metabolism

    The rate at which prescription drugs are broken down, assimilated, and the components of medical compounds of the drug are utilized by an individual. Every individual has different rates of metabolism due to their personal gene variants.

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    Metabolism
  • Mode of Action (aka, mechanism of action)

    A specific biochemical interaction through which a drug substance produces its pharmacological effect. A drug’s MOA may refer to its biological activity such as cell growth, or its interaction and modulation of its direct biomolecular target, for example a protein or nucleic acid. It usually includes mention of the specific molecular targets to which the drug binds, such as an enzyme or receptor.

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    Mode of Action (aka, mechanism of action)
  • Mutation

    Any change in the nucleotide base sequence of a gene. Mutations are a key mechanism to evolution through their detrimental or advantageous effect on the fitness of the organism.

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    Mutation
  • Nucleotide

    Sub-unit of DNA consisting of a nitrogenous base, a phosphate group, and a deoxyribose sugar.

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    Nucleotide
  • Nutrigenomics

    The scientific study of the interaction of nutrition and genes, especially with regard to the prevention or treatment of disease.

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    Nutrigenomics
  • Pharmacodynamics

    The branch of pharmacology concerned with the effects of drugs and the mechanism of their action. The biochemical and physiological effects of drugs, particularly those that define the drugs mechanism of action on the body.

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    Pharmacodynamics
  • Pharmacogenetics (PGx)

    Pharmacogenetics (Abbreviation: “PGx”) is the identification of genetic variations and their association with variations in drug treatment response. Derived from combination of the words “Pharma” (pharmaceutical) and “genetics” (your personal genes).

    Using life sciences and molecular technologies, pharmacogenetics measures your specific genes and the variants of your genes (alleles) to determine your individual metabolism for prescription drugs and medications.

    **Please click on “See More” button to view the Mayo Clinic video that will help educate you about PGx.

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    Pharmacogenetics (PGx)
  • Pharmacogenomic Test

    An assay intended to study inter-individual variations in whole genome or candidate gene, single nucleotide polymorphism SNP maps, haplotype markers, or alterations in gene expression or inactivation that may be correlated with pharmacological function and therapeutic response. In some cases, the pattern or profile of change is the relevant biomarker, rather than changes in individual markers. Pharmacogenetic testing provides information about a patient’s likelihood to have an adverse response and/or a therapeutic response to a medication, enabling the potential for a tailored and personalized approach to medication therapy. Although the primary focus of pharmacogenomic testing has been on improving drug selection and dosing in patient populations or individuals, a secondary potential benefit of testing may be the improvement of medication adherence.

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    Pharmacogenomic Test
  • Pharmacogenomics

    The incorporation of multiple pharmacogenetic results to develop gene-based phenotypic results. Pharmacogenomic uses include identifying drug responses, such as drug metabolism, interactions, inhibitors, adverse reactions and side-effects for patients in clinical treatment and for drug development trials.

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    Pharmacogenomics
  • Pharmacokinetics

    The branch of pharmacology concerned with the movement of drugs within the body. Includes: absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion ADME (absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion) of bioactive drugs following their administration to man.

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    Pharmacokinetics
  • Pharmacology

    Branch of medicine concerned with study of medicines and drugs, including their origin, action, use, and their effects on the body, including therapeutic and toxic effect. The Doctor of Pharmacy degree (often abbreviated as “Pharm.D”.) is required to sit for the North American Pharmacist Licensure Examination

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    Pharmacology
  • Phenotype

    The observable characteristics of an individual, such as body or tissue structure, behavior, or other measurable traits. The phenotype results from the expression of that individual’s genes and their interaction with environmental and internal factors.

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    Phenotype
  • Polymorphism

    A variant that has two or more alleles and is present at a frequency of at least 1% of the population. Polymorphisms are useful for genetic linkage analysis such as those used in pharmacogenetics.

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    Polymorphism
  • RNA

    (mRNA) – A ribonucleic acid (RNA) version of a gene that leaves the cell nucleus and moves to the cytoplasm. During protein synthesis, the ribosome, a cytoplasmic organelle, moves along the mRNA and translates each three-base triplet into the corresponding amino acid. RNAs are normally sampled through use of blood tests.

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    RNA
  • Sensitivity

    The frequency with which a test yields a true positive result among individuals who actually have the disease or the gene mutation in question. A test with high sensitivity has a low false-negative rate and thus does a good job of correctly identifying affected individuals.

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    Sensitivity
  • Sequencing

    The laboratory technique that determines the exact sequence of nucleotide bases in a DNA molecule. DNA sequence information is used to study how variations in genotypes impact gene function. DNA sequencing has become faster and cheaper since the completion of the Human Genome Project in 2000, when the first human genome was sequenced.

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    Sequencing
  • Single Nucleotide Polymorphism (SNP)

    Pronounced “snip”, a single nucleotide locus with two or more naturally occurring alleles defined by a single base pair substitution.

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    Single Nucleotide Polymorphism (SNP)
  • Swab

    An absorbent stick (similar to a Q-tip), is used to take a specimen of your saliva for examination. Swab the inside of each cheek for 15 seconds to ensure good collection of your saliva.

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    Swab
  • Toxicity

    The level of poison contained in a drug, or the ability of a drug to poison the body.

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    Toxicity
  • Variants

    Genetic variation is a term used to describe the variation in the DNA sequence in each of our genomes. Individuals have similar characteristics but they are rarely identical, the difference between them is called variation. Genetic variation results in different forms, or alleles, of genes. Variants impact the capacity utilization and speed in which drugs are metabolized by an individual.

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    Variants