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Marijuana Breathalyzer Finds THC Remains in the Breath for 2-3 Hours

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Hound Labs, a leader in breath diagnostics, announced results of its second clinical trial in which researchers measured THC in breath.

Results from this study confirm – for the first time in a clinical trial – that THC is present in breath for two to three hours after smoking, which is the same duration as peak impairment according to government studies. The trial also concluded that detecting THC in breath for two to three hours requires the capability to measure complex molecules in breath at extraordinarily low levels – to one trillionth of a gram per liter of breath (pg/L).

“In our trials, we discovered that THC rapidly moves from blood into breath and consistently appears in breath in very low concentrations for two to three hours,” said Dr. Kara Lynch.

Hound Labs created the world’s first marijuana and alcohol breathalyzer for employer and law enforcement use. This marks the first time a handheld device has the sensitivity required to determine recent marijuana use. Existing methods for testing THC in blood, urine, and saliva do not differentiate recent marijuana use from past use because THC can remain long after impairment subsides. Breath, on the other hand, was shown in the clinical trial to contain THC only for two to three hours, which correlates with the window of peak impairment.

“In order to solve the challenge of determining recent marijuana use, we spent five years developing new technology that enables unparalleled low levels of detection in a portable device,” said Dr. Mike Lynn, co-founder and CEO, Hound Labs. “We have been testing this technology in collaboration with one of the world’s premier research universities. After years of research and development, we are excited to have validated the Hound science and technology that will advance our collective understanding of THC in breath.”

Hound Labs has partnered with several companies to begin manufacturing its breathalyzers and anticipates providing commercial versions to charter customers later this year.

Photo: Hound Labs

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