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Cannabigerol (CBG) and Cannabigerolic Acid (CBGa) – “The Mother of All Cannabinoids”

Tuesday, September 22, 2020

 

How did cannabigerolic acid (CBGa) receive the title of the “Mother of All Cannabinoids”? In 1964, CBG was discovered by Israeli scientists Yehiel Gaoni and Raphael Mechoulam.

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30 years later, Japanese researchers discovered that its acidic form CBGa, is the very first cannabinoid to form in the cannabis plant.1 During the growth of the hemp plant, geranyl pyrophosphate and olivetolic acid, two organic compounds in the plant, combine to form CBGa. And, not only is it the first cannabinoid to form, it is also the “precursor” to the formation of the acidic forms of all other cannabinoids. Thus, without some level of CBGa, no other cannabinoid would exist – making it the Mother of All Cannabinoids.

As the flowers form and grow, most of the CBGa convert into the acidic forms of all the other cannabinoids, primarily tetrahydrocannabinolic acid (THCa), cannabidiolic acid (CBDa) and cannabichromenic acid (CBCa); usually leaving only about 1% to convert into CBG.2 After the acidic forms of these cannabinoids are formed, they are converted to their non-acidic forms (THC, CBD and CBC) through thermal decarboxylation, whereby heat causes the molecule to lost its acidic carboxyl group.

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Thus, in order to obtain high concentrations of CBG, care must be taken to prevent it from transforming into other cannabinoids.

This limitation was addressed in 2019, when Spanish hemp company, Hemp Trading and the Polytechnic University of Valencia (Spanish acronym UPV), developed the first THC-free cannabis strain which also had an increased the amount of CBG formed by up to 15% CBG.2 Due to CBG’s non-psychoactive properties and pharmacological potential, US farmers and manufacturers are capitalizing on this breakthrough.


Is CBG Legal?

As always, there’s still a lot of confusion surrounding the marijuana plant and its derivatives in the United States. However, since CBG is non-psychoactive, we would expect it to fall under the same umbrella of cannabinoids like CBD. We know that the legal issues surrounding CBD is complex. We also know that hemp derived CBD and other hemp-derived cannabinoids are federally legal in the United States as long as the hemp plant does not contain more than 0.3% THC. We can also say that like CBD, CBG is not listed under the Federal Controlled Substance Act. And, it is also not listed under the United Nation’s Convention on Psychotropic Substances.1


What can CBG do?

Generally speaking, CBG has similar medicinal properties to CBD although some experts claim they are even more powerful. Like CBD, CBG has been shown to relieve pain, induce sleep, and relieve anxiety. In addition, recent scientific studies have shown great promise to the pharmacological benefits of CBG:

Crohn’s Disease - Several scientific studies have shown that CBG also reduces the inflammation8 caused by some diseases such as Crohn's disease.

Depression - CBG can also block serotonin receptors, suggesting that it may play an important role in treating depression.

Glaucoma - CBG could be a powerful ally in treating glaucoma given that it reduces intraocular pressure and is an effective vasodilator.7


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Neuroprotective Properties - Over recent years CBG has been found to have extremely active neuroprotective properties, particularly with respect to Huntington's disease.5 These properties may also be useful in treating many neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson's or Alzheimer's.4

Cardiovascular Disease - CBGa could help diabetics combat some of the disease’s complications and comorbidities, such as cardiovascular disease – the leading cause of death in diabetes patients. CBGa was studied in vitro and discovered to greatly inhibit the enzyme aldose reductase (ALR2), which is a major contributor to the oxidative stress that leads to diabetic complications.6

Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) - Another research study published on the National Library of Medicine published in 2013 suggests that CBGa may be useful in the treatment of IBD. As part of the study, researchers induced mice with colitis and then looked at the effects CBG had on intestinal cells from these animals. They determined that CBG had beneficial effects on colitis in that it mitigated the severity of the colitis, reduced nitric oxide production and reduced the creation of oxidizing agents in the small intestine. These findings led researchers to recommend CBG for clinical experimentation in IBD patients.9


Where can you get CBG?

Fremont Botanicals now offers Extract Labs Hemp Tinctures with 1000mg of CBD and 1000mg of CBG in a full-spectrum formulation and a broad-spectrum formulation. Extract Labs is based in Colorado and works with Colorado hemp growers.

The Full Spectrum CBG Tincture contains the full complement of major and minor cannabinoids, terpenes, and other phytochemicals that are naturally occurring in the hemp plant. It has been shown that all these parts work synergistically to provide the full entourage effect.

The Broad Spectrum CBG Tincture is a THC-Free alternative to Full Spectrum. If you must avoid any trace amounts of THC, Broad Spectrum Oil is your best option. This is also a whole-plant extract, and will provide the same potential "entourage effect" minus the contributions that <0.3% THC may have.

Extract Labs partners with Colorado hemp growers that have successfully grown hemp plants with higher concentrations of CBG, some containing as much as 15% CBG.

Extract Labs’ CBG products is the first of its kind to feature a 1:1 ratio of CBG to CBD. This is a whole-plant, full-spectrum 


The future of CBG

All the research in cannabinoids, and in particular CBG, continues to grow and show great promise in providing pharmacological benefits. Future research and studies are also underway to develop cannabis strains that have higher concentrations of the non-psychoactive cannabinoids, such as CBD and CBG. CBG seeds are reliably compliant with local and federal hemp standards while providing a lot of therapeutic benefits.

There are many studies being conducted to increase the amount of CBG in hemp plants. One example is a company called Oregon CBD that has been working on a CBG-dominant hemp varieties for seed production. They claim to have developed pure CBG Type 4 hemp plants with 100:1 and 300:1 CBG to THC ratios. They claim that their products contain less than 0.3% THC, which is below federal limits.4 the CO2 extraction process.

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The future of CBG

All the research in cannabinoids, and in particular CBG, continues to grow and show great promise in providing pharmacological benefits. Future research and studies are also underway to develop cannabis strains that have higher concentrations of the non-psychoactive cannabinoids, such as CBD and CBG. CBG seeds are reliably compliant with local and federal hemp standards while providing a lot of therapeutic benefits.

There are many studies being conducted to increase the amount of CBG in hemp plants. One example is a company called Oregon CBD that has been working on a CBG-dominant hemp varieties for seed production. They claim to have developed pure CBG Type 4 hemp plants with 100:1 and 300:1 CBG to THC ratios. They claim that their products contain less than 0.3% THC, which is below federal limits.4


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Other North American companies including True Terpenes and Panacea Plant are developing CBG-rich cannabis plants which could produce this cannabinoid in concentrations up to 100%. Some sources also suggest that the British company GW Pharmaceuticals is studying this secondary cannabinoid more deeply using a line of plants which can produce pure CBG.4

These studies make great commercial sense by bringing products to market which contain just one cannabinoid and to broaden the CBG market to include non- cannabis users. Moreover, it is a great way to disseminate research and to educate the general public on the benefits of consuming hemp-based medical cannabis.4


References:

1.https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cannabigerol

2.https://www.cannabisground.com/much-cbg

3.https://wayofleaf.com/education/exploring-cbga

4.https://www.humboldtseeds.net/en/blog/cbg-nest-leap-forward-medical-cannabis/

5.https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25252936/

6.https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/29427593/

7.https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/1965836/

8.https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0006295213000543

9.https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23415610/