Cannabinoids

A cannabinoid is one of a class of diverse chemical compounds that acts on cannabinoid receptors, also known as the endocannabinoid system in cells that alter neurotransmitter release in the brain. 

There are three categories of cannabinoids:

Phytocannabindoids: Found in Cannabis Hemp & Marijuana

Endocannabinoids: Produced naturally in the body by animals

Synthetic Cannabinoids: Manufactured Artificially.

(Not used or sold here)

Cannabidiol (CBD): Is another major constituent of the cannabis plant and most dominant in cannabis hemp plants.

Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC): The most notable cannabinoid is the phytocannabinoid and the primary psychoactive compound in the cannabis marijuana plant.

The endocannabinoid system within the human body is a naturally forming system that regulates a wide variety of physiological processes, such as mood, memory, and appetite. When a deficiency or other defect occurs, it can often lead to disease.

When cannabis is ingested, cannabinoids immediately bind to the endocannabinoid receptors most commonly found in the brain and immune system. The effects on the human body differ based on the specific receptors to which they bind. CBN, or cannabinol, for instance, fastens specifically to CB-2 receptors. Depending on the ratio of cannabinoids ingested, they will have a different effect on the body.

There are over 100 different cannabinoids isolated from cannabis, exhibiting varied effects.

Cannabidiol (CBD)

CBD has tremendous medical potential. This is particularly true when the correct ratio of CBD to THC is applied to treat a particular condition. CBD acts as an antagonist at both the CB1 and CB2 receptors, yet it has a low binding affinity for both. This suggests that CBD’s mechanism of action is mediated by other receptors in the brain and body.

Cannabidiolic Acid (CBDA)

CBDA, similar to THCA, is the main constituent in cannabis with elevated CBD levels. CBDA selectively inhibits the COX-2 enzyme, contributing to cannabis’ anti-inflammatory effects.

Cannabidivarin (CBDV)

Like THCV, CBDV differs from CBD only by the substitution of a pentyl (5 carbon) for a propyl (3 carbon) sidechain. Although research on CBDV is still in its initial stages, recent studies have shown promise for its use in the management of epilepsy. This is due to its action at TRPV1 receptors and modulation of gene expression.

Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)

The most abundant cannabinoid present in marijuana, THC is responsible for cannabis’ most well-known psychoactive effects. THC acts as a partial agonist at the CB1 and CB2 receptors. The compound is a mild analgesic, or painkiller, and cellular research has shown that it has antioxidant activity.

Tetrahydrocannabinolic Acid (THCA)

THCA is the main constituent in raw cannabis. THCA converts to Δ9-THC when burned, vaporized, or heated at a certain temperature. THCA, CBDA, CBGA, and other acidic cannabinoids hold the most COX-1 and COX-2 inhibition, contributing to cannabis’ anti-inflammatory effects. This cannabinoid also acts as an antiproliferative and antispasmodic.

Cannabinol (CBN)

CBN is a mildly psychoactive cannabinoid that is produced from the degradation of THC. There is usually very little to no CBN in a fresh plant. CBN acts as a weak agonist at both the CB1 and CB2 receptors, with greater affinity for CB2 receptors than CB1. The degradation of THC into CBN is often described as creating a sedative effect, known as a “couch lock.”

Cannabigerol (CBG)

A non-psychoactive cannabinoid, CBG’s antibacterial effects can alter the overall effects of cannabis. CBG is thought to kill or slow bacterial growth, reduce inflammation, (particularly in its acidic CBGA form,) inhibit cell growth in tumor/cancer cells, and promote bone growth. It acts as a low-affinity antagonist at the CB1 receptor. CBG pharmacological activity at the CB2 receptor is currently unknown.

Cannabichromene (CBC)

CBC is most frequently found in tropical cannabis varieties. CBC is known to relieve pain, reduce inflammation, inhibit cell growth in tumor/cancer cells, and promote bone growth. The effects of CBC appear to be mediated through non-cannabinoid receptor interactions.

Tetrahydrocannabivarin (THCV)

THCV is a minor cannabinoid found in only some strains of cannabis. The only structural difference between THCV and THC is the presence of a propyl (3 carbon) group, rather than a pentyl (5 carbon) group, on the molecule. Though this variation may seem subtle, it causes THCV to produce very different effects than THC. These effects include a reduction in panic attacks, suppression of appetite, and the promotion of bone growth. THCV acts as an antagonist at the CB1 receptor and a partial agonist at the CB2 receptor.

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Disclaimer: The statements made regarding these products have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The efficacy of these products has not been confirmed by FDA-approved research. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. All information presented here is not meant as a substitute for or alternative to information from health care practitioners. Please consult your health care professional about potential interactions or other possible complications before using any product. The Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act requires this notice.