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Conn. university to test pot for contaminants

SeattlePI.com


Heather Miller Coyle, a forensic botanist and associate professor at the university, says all sorts of nasty things not visible to the naked eye have been found in marijuana — mold, mildew, insect parts, salmonella and E. coli, to name a few. The aim is to be able to identify potentially harmful substances through a testing method that could make the analysis easier and quicker for labs across the country in the developing industry of marijuana quality control testing. The health effects of marijuana tainted with mold, pesticides and other contaminants aren't clear, said Mason Tvert, a Colorado-based spokesman for the Marijuana Policy Project in Washington, D.C. The project was founded in 1995 to lobby for the reduction or elimination of penalties for marijuana use. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in July that an "epidemic" of synthetic drug use has caused rising numbers of deaths and emergency room visits. The school created a marijuana DNA profile database that has helped federal authorities determine where illegal pot growers and dealers got their product.
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