5F-PB-22, or quinolin-8-yl 1-pentyfluoro-1H-indole-3-8-carboxylate, is a synthetic indole cannabinoid as it contains a substituted core indole structure. This indole core is shared with other cannabinoid substances including PB-22JWH-018, and AM2201. 5F-PB-22 is an ether with formula R-O-R’, which can be understood as a substance with two sub-units joined through an oxygen bridge. The indole group of 5F-PB-22 is substituted at R5 with a fluoropentyl chain, a substitution shared with 5F-AKB48. Additionally, the indole core is substituted at R3 with a carboxylic acid group. The terminal oxygen of this carboxylic acid is bonded through an ether bond to a quinoline group at location R8 of the heterocycle.



5F-PB-22 (quinolin-8-yl 1-(5-fluoropentyl)-1H-indole-3-carboxylate) is a synthetic cannabinoid
receptor agonist (SCRA) that had no history in the scientific literature until its detection emerged
in 2013. This substance has been encountered as a synthetic constituent found in herbal smoking
mixtures that are sold under a variety of brand names. It is common for retailers to purchase bulk
quantities of the synthetic substance and add the synthetic material to plant matter that is then
distributed onto the market. However, 5F-PB-22 is also available in powdered form as a “research
chemical”. Various UN Member States reported the identification of 5F-PB-22 first in 2013 and
data obtained from law enforcement suggest that 5F-PB-22 emerged and peaked in 2013 and 2014
in the United States of America, which then dropped in the following years.
A small number of in vitro and in vivo studies are currently available but the data indicate that 5FPB-22 binds to and activates human CB1 and CB2 receptors at low nanomolar concentrations, and
that it induces a number of biological responses also triggered by the naturally occurring
phytocannabinoid Δ9
-THC. In some in vitro assays, 5F-PB-22 acted as a full at both cannabinoid
receptors. 5F-PB-22 also fully substituted for Δ9
-THC in the drug discrimination paradigm and
was ~22 times more potent than the training drug, which suggests that 5F-PB-22 may have abuse
liability similar to Δ9
-THC and/or other internationally controlled synthetic cannabinoid receptor
Reports indicate an increasing trend for SCRAs being implicated in mini epidemics that have been
associated with severe adverse drug effects including deaths. Reported adverse drug reactions
associated with a range of SCRAs frequently include gastrointestinal (e.g. nausea/hyperemesis),
neurological (e.g. hallucination, agitation, anxiety, paranoia, confusion, delusions, catatonia,
lethargy, psychosis (including susceptible individuals)), cardiovascular (e.g. tachycardia,
hypertension) and renal (e.g. acute kidney failure) features

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