What is CBG?
The cannabis plant produces hundreds of cannabinoids. The pharmacology of most of these have yet to be studied. More common cannabinoids like tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD) have a long history and awareness. With the passing of the 2018 Farm Bill and the country wide cultivation of hemp, lesser know cannabinoids have be gaining attention as more research is allowed. Cannabigerol (CBG) was first detected in 1964 and found to not contain similar hallucinogenic properties as THC. CBG is the known precursor to THC and CBD and is abundantly found in some hemp varieties. Because CBG is the precursor to THC and CBD, it can provide the beneficial properties of cannabinoids without the worry of THC concentration.
What Does CBG Do?
In vitro studies show that CBG can counteract oxidative stress by activation of CB2 receptors. Anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective effects were also reported for CBG in vitro and in vivo in neurodegenerative disease models making it a compound of focus for future studies of neurodegenerative disorders. Inflammation and oxidative stress are key factors in neurodegenerative disorders, such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and multiple sclerosis. There is no known cure for neurodegenerative disorders, however there is an array of research focused on the discovery of new compounds that may be able to delay or prevent the degradation of neuronal cells. Compounds with both anti-inflammatory and antioxidative properties may provide a strategy to protect neuronal cells.
Where Does CBG Come From?
Like CBD, CBG is derived from the cannabis sativa plant. The cannabinoid composition produced by the plant depends on the metabolic pathways that convert precursor cannabinoids to end product cannabinoids. The different conversions of CBG are enzymatically catalyzed by THC-synthase and CBD-synthase. Plants accumulating the precursor CBG are presumed to contain a single mutation which leads to dysfunctional synthases.
Written by: Joshua Baez
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