See an updated version of this post on The Leaf Online,Cannabinoid Profile – CBD!
As I mentioned in my first post I work at Harborside Health Center, the world’s largest medical cannabis dispensary and one setting a law-abiding example for all other collectives to emulate. We’ve been featured in the Discovery Channel documentary Weed Wars and CNN’s recent show Inside Man. We are also winning a major court battle against the Department of Justice in Federal court with the full support of the city of Oakland. This cannabinoid profile is based off something I prepared for work to help educate our staff, the first of many to come. While my manager only asked me to make one for CBD, as time allows, I plan to cover all major cannabinoids (THC, THCa, THCv, CBG, CBCs, etc). A slight bit of background on myself, though my BA is in political science it would be more accurate to say I went to school for a bachelors in cannabis. I wrote numerous research papers about cannabis while in school, I briefly appeared on CNN discussing why we should legalize it to end the war with Mexico’s cartels, and I was a regional director for Proposition 19 as well as 2012’s failed Regulate Cannabis Like Wine act. That is just the tip of my drug policy activism and merely the cover of my activists resume, but all that is terribly relevant to mention now. Future Cannabinoid Profile posts won’t bother with this introduction, I’ll just jump right into it from now on.
Molecular Mass: 314.2246 g/mol
Decarboxylation Point: 115-145°C (239°F to 293°F)*
Boiling Point: 180°C (356°F)
CBD is non-psychoactive and it is a powerful anti-psychotic drug, valuable for sufferers of psychosis or schizophrenia. CBD has been shown to be at least as strong an anti-inflammatory as Ibuprofen and at least as effective as THC for treating pain and managing tumors. CBD has a wide range of therapeutic uses ranging from physical ones like pain relief to mental ones like relief of anxiety and depression. CBD is also neuroprotective and neurogenetic, protecting the brain and promoting the growth of new brain cells. CBD has been shown to be extremely effective in treating seizures.
Due to the fact that it is non-psychoactive and strongly medicinal even in small doses CBD is highly recommended for treatment of children, the elderly, and anyone who wants to remain clear headed yet medicated. CBD appears to change how THC affects the body, making it less psychoactive and more therapeutic; this process is still being actively researched. CBG ,CBD, and the CBC’s all share the same molecular formula but have a different structure.
Analgesic – Relieves pain.
Antibacterial – Slows bacterial growth.
Anti-Diabetic – CBD is the only cannabinoid identified that helps lower blood sugar levels.
Antidepressant – Relieves symptoms of depression.
Anti-Emetic – Reduces vomiting and nausea.
Anti-Epileptic – Reduces seizures and convulsions.
Anti-inflammatory – Reduces inflammation systemically.
Anti-Insomnia – Aids with sleep.
Anti-Ischemic – CBD is the only cannabinoid identified that reduces the risk of artery blockage.
Antipsioratic – CBD is the only cannabinoid identified to treat psoriasis.
Anti-Proliferative – Inhibits cancer cell growth.
Antipsychotic – Tranquilizing effects relieve symptoms of psychosis, two terpenoids also help (linalool and myrcene).
Antioxidant – Prevents the damage of oxidation to other molecules in the body.
Antispasmodic – Suppresses muscle spasms.
Anxiolytic – Relieves anxiety.
Bone Stimulant – Promotes bone growth.
Immunosuppressive – CBD is the only cannabinoid identified that reduces function in the immune system.
Intestinal Anti-Prokinetic – CBD is the only cannabinoid identified that reduces small intestine contractions.
Neurogenic – Promotes the growth of new brain cells, specifically within the Hippocampus (an area of the brain responsible for memory and spatial awareness).
Neuroprotective – Slows damage to the nervous system and brain.
Vasorelaxant– CBD is the only cannabinoid identified that reduces vascular tension.
Currently Being Studied For
Cancer: A study was published in 2007, regarding ongoing research being done at San Francisco’s California Pacific Medical Center, showing that CBD inhibits a particular gene (Id-1) which is responsible for the growth of cancer cells in the body. By inhibiting this gene CBD shuts down the growth of cancer cells, potentially stopping or even reversing tumor growth. While it is premature to say that cannabis, specifically CBD, cures cancer it is worth further research.
Dravet Syndrome/Epilepsy: In October of 2013, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved two clinical trials assessing the therapeutic uses of CBD in treating intractable epilepsy in children. The CBD preparations are being made by British pharmaceutical company GW Pharmaceuticals, makers of Sativex. Dravet is a rare seizure disorder where usually children will have their first intractable seizure before they are even one year old, in exceptional cases seizures can last for hours and potentially over 24 hours. Where I work we have several patients who suffer from severe seizure disorders, like Dravets. Patients like Jayden, who has achieved near celebrity status for his great success in managing Dravets with a CBD-rich tincture.
Parkinson’s Disease: Two studies, one out of Israel and one case study, have come out this year showing that CBD rich cannabis may be a treatment for “complex sleep related behaviors” caused by Parkinson’s Disease. It would seem Parkinson’s Disease changes the pattern of rapid eye movement that happens while you sleep, causing sleep disturbances and CBD will mitigate that.
Depression/Anxiety: CBD stimulates the 5-HT1a receptor in the brain, this region of the brain is involved in the re-uptake of serotonin and other processes that aid with depression and anxiety. The antidepressant properties of CBD are very similar to the trycyclic antidepressant Imipramine (also being evaluated for panic disorder).
Schizophrenia/Psychosis: CBD is a powerful antipsychotic currently being considered for use in treating schizophrenia and other types of psychoses. Cannabidiol appears to have a very similar chemical profile to certain atypical antipsychotic drugs. CBD also slows the degradation of the endocannabinoid anandamide, resulting in increased levels of anandamide and lower rates of psychosis. A recent study found CBD to be as effective at treating psychosis as the anti-psychotic drug Amisulpride.
Liver Protection Against Binge Drinking: A study just came out showing that CBD protects the liver against damage from binge alcohol drinking by way of inhibiting oxidative stress and increasing autophagy. Put into layman’s terms CBD encourages the old and overused parts of cells to recycle into newer parts and controls free radical damage.
Inflammatory Bowel Disease/Crohn’s Disease: CBD shows a lot of promise for controlling the inflammatory responses and discomfort caused by Crohn’s disease and IBD. CBD has so much potential to regulate these diseases that it is being considered for a new class of IBD drugs.
Neurogenesis/Neuro-Inflammation: Since 2007, CBD has been studied for its role in promoting the growth of new brain cells in the Hippocampus, a brain region that governs memories and our spatial awareness. It was also shown to reduce inflammation in the brain, which is related to Alzheimer’s disease. The mechanism of the effect seems to relate to the activity at the CB1 and CB2 receptors.
Alzheimer’s Disease/Dementia/Memory Loss: Far from the stereotype, cannabis actually improves your memory and cognition abilities. CBD’s strong neuroprotective and anti-oxidative effects work together to counteract the effects of aging on our brains, fighting off memory loss and dementia.
If you read this post and are still craving more information check out this video and the references listed below.
- Steep Hill Lab, Cannabinoid and Terpenoid Reference Guide; http://steephilllab.com/resources/cannabinoid-and-terpenoid-reference-guide/
- Skunk Pharm Research, Cannabinoid and Terpene Info; http://skunkpharmresearch.com/cannabinoid-info/
- SC Labs, Meet the Cannabinoids; http://sclabs.com/learn/learn-cannabinoids.html
*Note: Decarboyxlation – A chemical reaction that removes a carboxyl group and releases CO2, often triggered by heat.