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Cannabinoid Information

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Cannabinoid Information “Cannabinoids refers to a group of substances that are structurally related to Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) or that bind to cannabinoid receptors. The term cannabinoids also refers to a unique group of secondary metabolites found in the cannabis plant, which are responsible for the plant's peculiar pharmacological effects.”(1). “Mechoulam and Gaoni (1967) defined “cannabinoids” as a group of C21 terpenophenolic compounds uniquely produced by cannabis. The subsequent development of synthetic cannabinoids (e.g., HU-210) has blurred this definition, as has the discovery of endogenous cannabinoids (e.g., anandamide), defined as “endocannabinoids” by DiMarzo and Fontana (1995). Thus, Pate (1999) proposed the term “phytocannabinoids” to designate the C21 compounds produced by cannabis.”(2) There are many different cannabinoids and terpinoids present in a sample of cannabis, however only the main cannabinoids have been linked to pharmacological activity so far. “The main cannabinoid types that are usually detected in each breeding strain or cultivar of cannabis are THC, CBD, CBN, CBG and CBC. However, there can be an enormous variation in their quantitative ratios.”(3). THCV is now also considered to be a main cannabinoid. “In fresh cannabis plant material, THC is predominantly present in the form of its acidic precursor THC-acid (THCA). Under the influence of heat or storage, THCA can be converted into free THC.”(4). This statement about the acidic precursor is also true regarding CBD, CBG, CBC, and THCV as well. The test kit not only reveals the cannabinoids in their neutral/active form, it reveals the acidic cannabinoids in their natural form as well. “Cannabinoids are enzymatically biosynthesized in the plant as their corresponding carboxylic acid forms (Taura et al., 2007). Neutral cannabinoids are formed via decarboxylation (loss of CO2) of the acidic cannabinoids during exposure to light, heat (e.g. smoking), or as a result of prolonged storage (Thakur et al., 2005). Cannabinol (CBN) is the most common oxidative degradation product of Δ9-THC found in aged cannabis (Fig. 1) (McPartland and Russo, 2001).”(5). Studies have determined that the acidic precursor of the neutral cannabinoids have important pharmacological properties as well. “The therapeutic value of the acidic cannabinoid THCA as an immuno-modulating agent has only been discovered very recently [Verhoeckx, 2006], and its effect has been patented. Examples like these show that the study of medicinal cannabis should include the whole array of cannabinoids present, as far as possible [McPartland, 2001]. The therapeutic potential of cannabinoids can be further clarified by pointing out the central physiological 1|Page

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