Cannabis or the term marijuana refers to the dried leaves, flowers, stems and seeds of the Cannabis sativa or Cannabis indica plant, it is a plant of the Cannabaceae family and contains more than one hundred biologically active chemical compounds. The most commonly known compounds are delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), cannabidiol (CBD), and cannabigerol (CBG).
Let’s start with CBD: it is the main component of cannabis. It is a non-psychotropic natural compound, with therapeutic and medicinal potential. Its properties and its ability to improve symptoms of various diseases improve the quality of life of many patients. CBD directly activates the serotonin receptor, which gives an anxiolytic effect. In addition, it directly activates several TRPV1 channels, which influence the perception of pain, inflammation, and body temperature. Along with CBD is THC, which is the compound that makes the psychotropic effect of cannabis popular.
Now let’s talk about THC: THC and CBD have the same structure: 21 carbon atoms, 30 hydrogen and two oxygen. But the difference between each is that THC produces the famous psychotropic effect of cannabis. Whereas, CBD does not have these effects.
Δ-9-Tetrahydrocannabinol or THC is the psychotropic component (perception alteration and mood modification) of the cannabis plant that is most important and abundant in varieties classified precisely as psychoactive.
One of the reasons THC has psychotropic effects is because it binds better to cannabinoid receptors. Most of the effects of THC occur in the body’s nervous system.
And finally the CBG: the CBG or the cannabigerol, which is found in 1% within the vast majority of the varieties of the plant. CBG, unlike THC, binds to CBG2 receptors in the digestive system, connective tissue, and the nervous system, moreover, like CBD, CBG does not give a psychotropic effect.
CBG is one of more than 100 known cannabinoids. In fact, it is the first to appear in the plant and, therefore, the rest of the cannabinoids derive from it. As the plant matures, CBGA is converted by plant enzymes into three main cannabinoid precursors: CBG, THC, and CBD.
Like other phytocannabinoids, CBG has a polypharmacological profile that makes it a molecule for medicinal and therapeutic use. These properties derive from its interaction with different receptors present in the cells of the body. Specifically, it interacts with our body through: CB1 and CB2 receptors, TRPV receptors and 5-HT1A receptors.
As with CBD, CBG will be a new alternative in the therapeutic use of cannabis. In addition, some of its medicinal properties are already known, all of them non-psychoactive. For example, its anti-inflammatory power or its effects to alleviate pain.
These are three of the most studied cannabinoids in Cannabis and how they can work in your body if consumed.