What Is Cannabichromene (CBC)?
When we consider the major cannabinoids, cannabichromene (CBC) is like the ugly duckling. It doesn’t get a lot of praise, or attention for that matter, but it has shown to have profound benefits. Similar to cannbidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), CBC stems from the all-important cannabigerolic acid (CBGA).
Cannabigerolic acid (CBGA) is often referred to as the “stem cell” of cannabinoids. It is the precursor to THC, CBD, and CBC.
From there, enzymes cause it to convert into cannabidiol carboxylic acid (CBDA), tetrahydrocannabinol carboxylic acid (THCA), or cannabichrome carboxylic acid (CBCA). In this case of CBCA, it obviously passes through the CBC synthase, or the enzymes that get the specific process underway.
In order to get cannabichromene, decarboxylation must occur. Over time, or quickly if exposed to heat, the CBCA will lose a molecule of CO2; at this point it is considered CBC. The same process applies when developing THC and CBD.
Cannabichromene Showing Promise In Treating Cancer
Although cannabichromene isn’t the most popular cannabinoid, research suggests CBC could be very beneficial. According to Halent Labs, a top lab-testing facility, it’s believed to inhibit inflammation and pain. In addition, it is believed to stimulate bone growth.
Cannabichromene has been a successful remedy for migraines. It also has shown signs in minimizing pain and inflammation.
One of the most intriguing findings about cannabichromene is it’s relationship with cancer. CBC is believed to have anti-proliferative effects, meaning it inhibits the growth of cancerous tumors. This could be a result of its interaction with anandamide.
Anandamide is an endocannabinoid, which means our body produces it naturally. It effects the CB1 receptors, as well as the CB2 receptors, and has been found to fight against human breast cancer. CBC inhibits the uptake of anandamide, which allows it to stay in the blood stream longer.
Not only does CBC have benefits of its own, but it seems to work with the other cannabinoids to produce a synergistic effect; it gives merit to the saying, “the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.” Even though cannabichromene is found in much smaller concentrations than THC and CBD, its importance should not be overlooked.
Italian Researchers Investigated Three Major Cannabinoids
As is the trend lately, a team of researchers from the Endocannbinoid Research Group in Italy investigated how cannabinoids affect the brain’s development. The group is funded by GW Pharmaceuticals, which is the manufacturer of Sativex. It seems as if they hope to grow their inventory of pharmaceuticals made from cannabinoids.
Sativex is derived from THC and CBD. It is currently approved in Spain, France, and UK.
This study, in particular, focused on the role cannabinoids play in developing adult brain cells. In order to do so, the researchers investigated neural progenitor stem cells (NPSC), which are vital in brain functioning.
What Are NPSCs Impact On Brain Development?
Like the name suggests, NPSCs are the stem cells of the brain. They are the precursors to 3 types of cell in the brain: neurons, oligodendrocytes, and astrocytes. Because NPSCs are able to create each of these cells in the right conditions, they are being explored to help regenerate brain cells. This would be especially useful in the treatment of diseases like Parkinson’s, Alzheimer‘s, and Multiple Sclerosis.
One type of NPSCs daughter cells is are called astrocytes. They are most prevalent cell in the brain and their role is to support and protect the neurons, which send signals throughout the nervous system. In the case of nerve injury, astrocytes repair the damaged area and replace any area that can’t be repaired. A lot of the interest about NPSCs is due to the potential of controlling the development of astrocytes; it could allow scientists to completely restore damaged nerves.
Cannabis May Increase Neural Progenitor Stem Cells
The Italian cannabinoid study, being published in Neurochemistry International, tested the effects of tetrahydrocannbinol (THC), cannabigerol (CBG), and cannabichromene (CBC). That being said, they seemed to place a particular importance on CBC specifically.
The Endocannabinoid Research Group said their results suggest CBC can help the growth and survival of NPSCs.
They found that CBC was related to higher concentrations of NPSCs. It also seemed to inhibit the creation of proteins that cause the NPSCs to convert to other brain cells. This suggested that CBC may interact with this process, it could be help decide what brain cells are being developed and when.
Although the researchers decided to focus on one cannabinoid in particular, it’s important to know that whole cannabis is generally more effective. There are over 80 cannabinoids in the cannabis, and they all seem to work together. It is simply not the same when we isolate specific cannabinoids, as the we no longer can experience the synergistic effects of whole cannabis.