Despite the murky legal status of this abundant substance, cannabidiol and CBD oil appear to be everywhere these days. How much do we actually understand about CBD, though? 5 CBD’s Hidden Gems Revealed!
Before It Was Discovered, CBD Was Illegal
Let’s start with our first hidden gem out of our CBD’s hidden gems. With the passing and enforcement of the Marihuana Tax Act in 1937, cannabis was practically forbidden by the federal government. The Act made it clear that cannabis resin and any extract made from the resin were to be regarded as “marijuana” (i.e. the Evil Weed). Only in the resin can you find cannabidiol (CBD), nowhere else in the plant. (The resin contains a significant amount of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), popularly known as The High Causer), as well as a variety of other medicinal substances.) In fact, federal law forbade the non-intoxicating cannabis component CBD before anyone ever knew it existed.
The first time CBD was recognized and produced was by University of Illinois chemist Roger Adams in 1940. He received a patent for his original approach to isolating CBD two years later. Adams noted that CBD had anti-inflammatory characteristics and contributed to the 1944 La Guardia Report on the Marihuana Problem, which refuted many of the alarmist assertions about reefer madness put forth by the Federal Bureau of Narcotics. Adams also noted that CBD had pain-killing properties. by the time he retired in 1957, Adams published 27 studies on CBD and other plant cannabinoids. The American Chemical Society later recognized his contributions to science by creating the distinguished Roger Adams Award in his honor. After Adams’ work, an Israeli scientist named Raphael Mechoulam clarified the precise chemical structure of CBD in 1963. In 1964, he also performed the same for THC.
CBD’s Hidden Gems: Brain Cell Growth Is Inspired by CBD Oil
In addition to protecting existing brain cells, cannabidiol (CBD) also promotes “neurogenesis,” the creation of new brain cells. The subventricular zone of the lateral ventricles and the subgranular zone of the dentate gyrus are the two regions of the hippocampus where new neurons are constantly being produced. Cannabinoid (CB1) receptors are widely distributed across several areas of the brain. According to a 2019 study by a group of Brazilian researchers, activation of CB1 receptors induces the growth of new neurons, highlighting the crucial function of the endocannabinoid system in embryonic and adult neurogenesis.
THC binds to CB1 directly, but CBD stimulates CB1 signaling via other mechanisms. THC and CBD are both “neurogenic” compounds that support neurogenesis. German researchers stated in 2010 that “the pro-neurogeneic actions of CBD might explain some of the beneficial therapeutic properties of CBD-based drugs.” Contrary to “chronic alcohol exposure, which reduces endocannabinoid activity and disrupts adult neurogenesis,” Spanish researchers reported in 2015 that “the antidepressant properties of CBD, THC, and several other compounds are contingent on enhanced neurogenesis and neuroplasticity, the ability to adapt to stress and injury.” Preclinical studies have shown that while a modest dose of CBD stimulates neurogenesis, greater doses have the opposite effect.
CBD’s Hidden Gems: CBD Oil is Not Toxic, It Has A Psychoactive Effect
When Project CBD was founded ten years ago to inform people about cannabidiol, we frequently referred to it as “non-psychoactive,” and it later became the catchphrase of the fledgling CBD industry. The claim that CBD is not psychoactive and won’t make you high has long been a major selling point for the substance. The politically acceptable drug war ideology claims that the high from cannabis is a negative side effect. At Project CBD, we’ve now realized that calling CBD non-psychoactive is misleading even while it is undeniably not a narcotic. It is clear that CBD is a potent mood-altering molecule when a clinically depressed patient or a PTSD sufferer eats a CBD-rich tincture and experiences their first truly great day in a long time. While CBD doesn’t have the same euphoric or dysphoric effects as THC, it can nevertheless have a favorable effect on a person’s mental state.
The best part is that THC and CBD together can have a medicinal impact that is more potent than either one alone. So it makes sense to medicate with a CBD-rich product that also contains as much THC as you are comfortable with. That means as little THC as possible for certain folks. People who are extremely sensitive to cannabis may have a genetic variation that prevents them from metabolizing THC, which remains active in their bodies for a longer period of time. About 20% of Caucasians have a variation in the gene that codes for the isoform of cytochrome P450 that metabolizes THC. Additionally, 5% of Asians and 10% of African Americans have this genetic anomaly, which renders them extremely susceptible to THC. For those who prefer not to get high, there are non-intoxicating CBD-rich products with very no THC available.
THC and CBD Enhance Each Other to The Fullest
We’ve come to our fourth hidden gem of our CBD’s hidden gems. Cannabidiol is frequently praised by manufacturers of CBD oil for its capacity to counteract THC’s high effects. This emphasis, however, obscures one of CBD’s biggest benefits: It helps one to control marijuana’s complex psychoactivity in a way that is tailored to one’s individual requirements and sensitivities. That can entail lessening the euphoria while leaving some of it. One of the main challenges for cannabis therapies is determining the ideal ratio of CBD to THC. The cannabis plant’s power pair, CBD and THC function best together.
Extensive clinical research has shown that CBD and THC together are more effective at treating neuropathic pain than either chemical alone. When tested on brain cancer and breast cancer cell lines, researchers at the California Pacific Medical Center in San Francisco discovered that a CBD-THC combination has a more effective anti-tumoral effect than either molecule alone. Additionally, a 2010 study published in the British Journal of Pharmacology found that CBD enhanced some of the effects of an ineffective THC dose to the level of an effective one in an animal model of colitis. To put it another way, a low, non-intoxicating amount of THC alone might not have therapeutic benefits. A non-intoxicating amount of THC, however, may produce the required therapeutic effect when paired with CBD. That’s fantastic news for anyone who want cannabis’ medicinal effects without the high.
Admired Among Many Chemical Channels In The Brain
Last but not least hidden gem of our CBD’s hidden gems. The two cannabinoid receptor subtypes (CB1 and CB2), two main endocannabinoid ligands (2-AG and anandamide), and other proteins that control the production, transport, and metabolic breakdown of our endogenous cannabinoids make up the canonical endocannbinoid system. It turns out that CBD has little affinity for either cannabinoid receptor and instead exerts its effects through a dizzying variety of chemical channels. The scientific literature has identified more than 65 molecular targets of CBD, including multiple G-protein coupled receptors that stimulate or inhibit serotonin, adenosine, and opioid transmission, according to Mayo Clinic neurologist Eugene L. Scharf (writing in 2017). CBD interacts with nuclear receptors (PPARs), several members of the transient receptor potential (TRP) channel family of ionotropic receptors, as well as a number of ligand-gated ion channels, including glycine (GlyR), nicotinic acetylcholine (nACh), and sodium channels. It also binds to several so-called orphan receptors (GPR3, GPR6, GPR12, GPR18 (NaV).
For a tiny molecule, it is a lot of scientific jargon, but there is more. CBD inhibits THC’s capacity to signal through CB1 without completely blocking it because it acts as a negative allosteric CB1 receptor modulator. This seems to be one method by which CBD reduces the maximum potency of THC’s intoxication effects. Additionally, CBD exerts its therapeutic effects through a variety of receptor-independent pathways. CBD’s promiscuous nature “offers unique potential for the therapy of neurological, oncological, and inflammatory illnesses,” Paula Morales and Patricia H. Reggio write in Medicinal Chemistry.
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