The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) Drug Supply Program (DSP) provides a variety of research chemicals and controlled substances for research purposes to all investigators working in the area of drug abuse, addiction, and related disciplines. The availability of controlled substances is regulated by the United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Department of Justice under the Controlled Substances Act (CSA), and Psychotropic Convention. These substances include hallucinogens, stimulants, sedatives and hypnotics, narcotics, designer drugs, cannabinoids, marijuana, and other miscellaneous categories of drugs. The NIDA DSP maintains an inventory of such drugs and other chemical substances. In addition, continuous efforts are made to synthesize new compounds and add them to the inventory. The stability and purity of all such compounds are monitored and maintained.
Marijuana. Marijuana is grown, harvested, processed and analyzed for delta-9-THC and other cannabinoids, stored under controlled conditions to preserve its purity and stability, and distributed for approved research purposes. This substance is subject to control under Schedule I of the CSA (21 U.S.C. 801 et seq), the most restrictive of the five federally regulated classes of controlled substances. Persons who wish to conduct research using marijuana or marijuana cigarettes and/or plan to use it for purposes other than research such as forensic analytical standard, dog training, or any other law enforcement purposes must first obtain a special DEA registration under the CSA and then submit a request to NIDA along with the required documents for consideration.
Nicotine Research Cigarettes. The NIDA DSP also houses a variety of nicotine research cigarettes (NRC) with specific characteristics for nicotine content and yield, tar, menthol, and ventilation (NOT-DA-13-002). As with other research chemicals or controlled substances supplied by the DSP, NRCs can be provided to investigators working in the area of drug abuse, addiction, or related disciplines at no cost. At this time, NRCs are of limited supply and priority is given to federally-funded grantees including those working on areas related to the tobacco regulatory science authority of the United States Food & Drug Administration Center for Tobacco Products (FDA/CTP). A separate administrative review by the FDA/CTP, in collaboration with NIDA, is required for those working on projects within the FDA/CTP priority areas.
For a full listing of compounds and cigarettes, please view the NIDA Drug Supply Catalog (PDF, 4.9MB) - this document is not fully accessible, for help viewing this content, please contact Hari Singh at 301-435-1310.
In order to obtain controlled substances, other research chemicals, marijuana, marijuana and nicotine research cigarettes from NIDA, research investigators and users other than researchers are required to submit their requests along with necessary documents to the NIDA DSP for consideration. Applicants without an NIH grant are subject to additional scientific review. Additionally, for non-grantees using marijuana and marijuana cigarettes and plan to use it for human research, an additional review is required by the US Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Services. If marijuana is to be used for purposes other than human research the request is forwarded to NIDA’s Office of the Director for review and recommendation.
Foreign applicants must provide necessary documentation that controlled substances, research chemicals, and/or marijuana cigarettes being requested are permitted for import to their respective countries.
Approved research investigators are provided with pure drugs/compounds or cigarettes along with their respective analytical data sheets.
For more information, please see: