The term CBD has been all over the media lately. Most recently Dr. Sanjay Gupta, (leading American neurosurgeon & CNN Chief Medical Correspondent) and even the New York Times are talking about the helpful benefits. But what is a CBD? The name is an acronym for a cannabinoid called cannabidiol. Most people have heard of a chemical called THC, which is the ingredient in marijuana that gets users high. But recently, attention has shifted to another marijuana compound called CBD. And for good reason. Because while most doctors can’t seem to look past certain side effects of THC, CBD doesn’t seem to present that problem. On the other hand, evidence of CBD’s vast medical potential is mounting.
CBD is a key ingredient in cannabis – CBD is one of over 60 compounds found in cannabis that belong to a class of molecules called cannabinoids. Of these compounds, CBD and THC are usually present in the highest concentrations, and are therefore the most recognized and studied. CBD and THC levels tend to vary between different strains and varieties of cannabis. For example, by using selective breeding techniques, cannabis breeders have managed to create varieties with high levels of CBD and next to zero levels of THC.
CBD is non-psychoactive – Unlike THC, CBD does not cause a high. While this makes CBD a poor choice for recreational users, it gives the chemical a significant advantage as a medicine, since health professionals prefer treatments with minimal side effects. The reason why CBD is non-psychoactive is due to its lack of affinity for CB1 receptors. CB1 receptors are found in high concentrations in the brain, and are the pathways responsible for the psychoactive effects of THC.
CBD has a wide range of medical benefits – Despite a different pathway of action, CBD seems to possess many of the same benefits of THC. According to a 2013 review published in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology, studies have found CBD to possess the following medical properties:
Unfortunately, most of this evidence comes from animal studies, as very few clinical trials have been conducted using the chemical.
CBD reduces the negative effects of THC – CBD seems to offer natural protection against the marijuana high. Numerous studies suggest CBD acts to counter the intoxicating effects of THC, including memory impairment and paranoia. Both CBD and THC have been found to present no risk of lethal overdose. However, to reduce potential side effects, medical users may be better off using cannabis strains with higher levels of CBD.
We had the chance to interview Chuck Largen, Founder & organic farmer of canabis at Emerald Triangle Genetics in Northern California
Revolt In Style: What exactly is Cannabidiol?
Chuck: CBD – is a compound in cannabis that has significant medical effects, but does not make people feel “stoned” and can actually counter the psychoactivity of THC. The reduced psychoactivity of CBD-rich cannabis may make it an appealing treatment option for patients seeking anti-inflammatory, anti-pain, anti-anxiety, anti-psychotic, and/or anti-spasm effects without disconcerting lethargy or dysphoria.
Cannabidiol is a cannabinoid and a major component of the cannabis plant, or marijuana plant. By itself, cannabidiol lacks the psychoactive effects most commonly associated with marijuana use yet still retains many of the medicinal benefits, such as its anti-seizure and anti-inflammatory effects.
The legal status of cannabidiol varies from country to country. In the United States, for instance, it and all other phytocannabinoids are classified as Schedule I controlled substances, making possession or ingestion illegal.”
Q. What form is CBD in, is it smoked?
A. No, CBD is in an oil or a pill form. Children can have this added to their food or given through a gtube if they have one. Children do not smoke CBD oil, it is ingested orally. Again, the THC component of the plant is very low and therefore children ingesting this CBD oil do NOT experience a psychotrophic high.
Q. Where is medicinal marijuana legal?
A. Types of medicinal marijuana are only legal in 20 States in the country. What medicinal marijuana like CBD varies from state to state even for those that are legalized. For instance, Illinois has it legalized but not yet available to treat seizures.
Q. What is the difference between marijuana and hemp?
A. There are many answers available online to this question, many of them are not quite accurate. Marijuana and Hemp are the same plant genus of the species Cannabis L. Sativa. The only difference between a Marijuana plant and a Hemp Plant is the specific regulations of the jurisdiction in which the plants are grown.
Most jurisdictions qualify Hemp as a Cannabis plant that yields lower than 0.3% THC on average in its life cycle. So all hemp plants would qualify as Marijuana or Cannabis, but not all Marijuana could qualify as Hemp. Most Hemp cultivars have been bred for seed or fiber, and have a very low cannabinoid profile. Charlotte’s Web Hemp has been bred for a high cannabinoid profile, with the exception of the cannabinoid THC, which has been bred to a minute level within the plant.
Scientific and clinical studies underscore CBD’s potential as a treatment for a wide range of conditions, including rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, alcoholism, MS, chronic pain, schizophrenia, PTSD, antibiotic-resistant infections, epilepsy, and other neurological disorders. CBD has demonstrated neuroprotective and neurogenic effects, and its anti-cancer properties are currently being investigated at several academic research centers in the United States and elsewhere.
After decades in which only high-THC cannabis was available in North America and beyond, CBD-rich strains and products are now accessible to medical users. CBD will one day be recognized as one of the most valuable medicines of the twentieth century – wait, that cant be right, can it? The chinese have known about the healing benefits of CBDs for hundreds of years. Cannabis is one of the 50 “fundamental” herbs in traditional Chinese medicine. One major difference is that the chinese opt to administer the drug in
CBD produces many of the medical benefits of cannabis, but suppresses– or balances– the psychoactive effects of THC. It is a powerful preventive and curative medicine for some of the most serious diseases plaguing humankind; diseases like cancer and epilepsy and Alzheimer’s. It’s also a great alternative for anybody that finds today’s cannabis too strong, or just wants to access the therapeutic effects of cannabis without its psychoactive properties for whatever reason.
Both THC and CBD are part of an estimated 85 different chemical compounds found in cannabis known as cannabinoids. Each strain of cannabis contains varying quantities of the different cannabinoids, which is why some strains work better for patients than others do. Strains that contain more CBD than THC are known as CBD Rich strains, and have quite different effects from THC Rich strains.
Very simply, when THC connects to the CB1 or CB2 cannabinoid receptor site on the cancer cell, it causes an increase in ceramide synthesis which drives cell death. A normal healthy cell does not produce ceramide in the presence of THC, thus is not affected by the cannabinoid. The cancer cell dies, not because of cytotoxic chemicals, but because of a tiny little shift in the mitochondria. Within most cells there is a cell nucleus, numerous mitochondria (hundreds to thousands), and various other organelles in the cytoplasm. The purpose of the mitochondria is to produce energy (ATP) for cell use. As ceramide starts to accumulate, turning up the Sphingolipid Rheostat, it increases the mitochondrial membrane pore permeability to cytochrome c, a critical protein in energy synthesis. Cytochrome c is pushed out of the mitochondria, killing the source of energy for the cell.
One study in mice and rats suggested that cannabinoids may have a protective effect against the development of certain types of tumors. During this 2-year study, groups of mice and rats were given various doses of THC by gavage. A dose-related decrease in the incidence of hepatic adenoma tumors and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) was observed in the mice. Decreased incidences of benign tumors (polyps and adenomas) in other organs (mammary gland, uterus, pituitary, testis, and pancreas) were also noted in the rats. In another study, delta-9-THC, delta-8-THC, and cannabinol were found to inhibit the growth of Lewis lung adenocarcinoma cells in vitro and in vivo .In addition, other tumors have been shown to be sensitive to cannabinoid-induced growth inhibition.
An in vitro study of the effect of CBD on programmed cell death in breast cancer cell lines found that CBD induced programmed cell death, independent of the CB1, CB2, or vanilloid receptors. CBD inhibited the survival of both estrogen receptor–positive and estrogen receptor–negative breast cancer cell lines, inducing apoptosis in a concentration-dependent manner while having little effect on nontumorigenic, mammary cells.
Cannabinoids may also contribute to pain modulation through an anti-inflammatory mechanism; a CB2 effect with cannabinoids acting on mast cell receptors to attenuate the release of inflammatory agents, such as histamine and serotonin, and on keratinocytes to enhance the release of analgesic opioids has been described. One study reported that the efficacy of synthetic CB1- and CB2-receptor agonists were comparable with the efficacy of morphine in a murine model of tumor pain.
According to a press release, GW Pharmaceuticals will hold the patent rights to the two primary compounds found in marijuana, THC and CBD, for use as medicine for patients suffering from gliomas — the most common form of malignant brain tumor.
This interview was done back in 2014, but the principles are still the same. California and several states have now legalized the recreational use of marijuana and we say it’s about time. CBD is NOT THC and we need to make sure that people understand this…… Both CBD & THC are proven to help people, we need to do more on a National level to get these medicines to be properly labeled and not listed with drugs such as Heroin (diacetylmorphine) & LSD (Lysergic acid diethylamide) – they have no where near the same effect.