Cannabis plants can be exposed to heavy metals from polluted soil or water. The plants absorb and store these hazardous substances, which can be passed on to patients who use the cannabis. Heavy metals have many documented adverse health effects, both acute and chronic, including damage to almost every organ system (e.g., central nervous system, cardiovascular system, gastrointestinal system, excretory system, endocrine system, and skeletal system). In order to safeguard patients who use medical cannabis from these harmful effects, the Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission requires heavy metal concentrations to be below specific cutoff values.
Pinnacle CT uses ultra-sensitive inductively-coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) methods to measure the concentration of all heavy metal contaminants specified by Maryland state authorities. These include: