Breaking Down the Cannabis Plant
The most common cannabinoid compounds found in the cannabis plant:
THCA (Tetrahydrocannabinolic Acid) is the main compound found in a raw cannabis plant, but THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol) makes up the largest portion of cannabinoid compounds found in marijuana.
CBDA (Cannabidiolic Acid) is similar to THCA and is found in cannabis strains that have elevated levels of CBD. CBDV is a variant of CBD with more carbon atoms.
CBN (Cannabinol), on the other hand, is a mild psychoactive compound that is created in the degradation of THC and is not usually found in a fresh plant. If you’ve ever been “couch-slugged” from cannabis, this may be the culprit!
CBC is a more unique cannabinoid found in tropical cannabis plants that may help treat pain, inflammation, and cancer.
What is CBG?
Humans have two receptors that interact with the cannabis plant: CB1 and CB2.
CBG, or cannabigerol, is a non-psychoactive compound found in cannabis strains that are low in THC and high in CBD. Like CBD, CBG does not induce the high associated with marijuana and, in fact, works against the THC to reduce paranoia induced by high levels of THC. Studies have been conducted on the pharmacological effects of CBG on CB1, but not CB2.
CBG is known for its antibacterial effects, antidepressant like action, and anti-inflammatory properties. Studies show that CBG can work to reduce inflammation and pain, nausea, and the growth of cancer cells. Isolated CBG could be used in the future to treat conditions such as inflammatory bowel syndrome, Crohn’s disease, glaucoma, diseases and syndromes that affect body weight, and cancer.
What is THCV?
THCV, or tetrahydrocannabivarin, on the other hand, is a rarer psychoactive cannabinoid compound commonly associated with the sativa strain that interacts with both the CB1 and CB2 receptors. THCV differs from THC in that it has 3 carbon atoms on the molecule, as opposed to 5 in THC.
Although this difference may seem minute, it drastically changes the effects of the compound on the body. It is most commonly associated with feelings of motivation, alertness, energy, and euphoria. THCV has the potential to reduce panic attacks in those with post-traumatic stress disorder, relieve stress, suppress appetite, and promote bone growth. Furthermore, THC acts as a neuro-protective agent and may aid in treating Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, epilepsy and seizures, and multiple sclerosis.