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Abstract

Cannabis has garnered a great deal of new attention in the past couple of years in the United States due to the increasing instances of its legalization for recreational use and indications for medicinal benefit. Despite a growing number of laboratories focused on cannabis analysis, the separation science literature pertaining to the determination of cannabis natural products is still in its infancy despite the plant having been utilized by humans for nearly 30 000 years and it being now the most widely used drug world-wide. This is largely attributable to the restrictions associated with cannabis as it is characterized as a Schedule 1 drug in the United States. Presented here are reviewed analytical methods for the determination of cannabinoids (primarily) and terpenes (secondarily), the primary natural products of interest in cannabis plants. Focus is placed foremost on analyses from plant extracts and the various instrumentation and techniques that are used, but some coverage is also given to analysis of cannabinoid metabolites found in biological fluids. The goal of this work is to provide a collection of relevant separation science information, upon which terpene isomer analysis can continue to grow in the field of cannabis.
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