How do mosquitoes react to marijuana

So far, cannabinoid receptors and the body's own cannabinoids (endocannabinoids) have been detected in most vertebrates and invertebrates, in mammals, birds, amphibians (such as salamanders), fish, sea urchins, flukes, mussels and polyps.

Insects, on the other hand, do not have cannabinoid receptors, so cannabinoids cannot have any effect on mosquitoes. Ticks are arachnids. Together with the insects they belong to the arthropods (Anthropoda).

It is believed that insects do not have cannabinoid receptors because insects are low in arachidonic acid. This fatty acid is a precursor to endocannabinoids. Whether arachnids have cannabinoid receptors has not yet been investigated, so nothing conclusive can be said about ticks on this topic.

As mentioned above, however, another blood-sucking group of animals has cannabinoid receptors: the leeches. Like mosquitoes and ticks, leeches ingest significant amounts of blood measured by their body weight, so that they could also ingest relatively large amounts of THC.

However, whether leeches are psychologically influenced by THC depends on several factors. The activation of cannabinoid receptors in leeches should be able to trigger effects that are comparable to the psychological effects in humans, and the dose administered should also be sufficiently high. The cannabinoid receptor found in the leech is very similar to the cannabinoid receptor in the human brain. The activation of the brain cannabinoid receptor is responsible for the psychological effects after cannabis consumption in humans and other mammals. However, the cannabinoid system probably has different functions in the leech than in humans, so that its activation is unlikely to cause a state that would be comparable to a "high" in humans. However, it would be conceivable that the leech perceives its environment to be changed under the influence of THC.

The question of the sufficient THC dose should be examined in more detail using a calculation example. If a person ingests THC orally (eat, drink), around 10 to 20 milligrams are generally sufficient to cause mild psychological effects in a person weighing 70 kilograms. This corresponds to about 0.15 to 0.3 micrograms per gram of body weight.

Assuming that the leech weighs five grams, that it needs the same amounts of THC based on its weight in order to cause an effect, and that the bioavailability of the THC - the amount that actually has an effect - is the case with the leech is as big as humans, then the leech would have to absorb 0.75 to 1.5 micrograms or 750 to 1500 nanograms of THC. A nanogram is a millionth of a milligram.

After smoking cannabis, the THC concentration in human blood rises to around 100 to 400 nanograms per milliliter of blood for a few minutes. It then drops to below 10 nanograms per milliliter of blood within two to three hours.

In our example, the leech is supposed to suck 10 ml of blood within an hour from a cannabis user who has just ingested a large dose of THC. Under optimal conditions, it would then be conceivable that our leech would absorb 500 to 1000 nanograms of THC from the blood, so that it would come in the range of the equivalent dose calculated above for 10 to 20 milligrams in humans.

This example is nothing more than a gimmick, however, as there are some unknowns. It is often the case that smaller animals need comparatively larger amounts of drugs or medication in relation to their weight in order to have the same strong effects as larger animals. This is mainly due to the greater metabolic activity of small animals, which therefore also have to ingest relatively larger amounts of food. From this point of view, a leech would require significantly larger doses than the weight-related equivalent dose of 750 to 1500 nanograms of THC presented here. On the other hand, it is conceivable that the bioavailability of THC in leeches is significantly greater when ingested orally than in humans. In humans, the systemic bioavailability after eating or drinking cannabis is only about 5 to 10 percent. The rest is changed in the stomach and mostly metabolized in the liver before it can reach the brain and other organs.

In conclusion, it can be stated that THC has no effect on mosquitoes and probably also on ticks. This is different with the leech. However, the effects caused by the leech are probably not comparable to a human "high".