Scientists at the University of British Columbia revealed in a study that there may be a greater number of kinds of cannabinoids than anticipated. After gathering 33 strains of cannabis and subjecting them to UV spectroscopy, the researchers discovered 21 previously unidentified compounds. Furthermore, according to Nature, they also speculate that cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) are not as important for understanding the effects of individual strains as previously thought,
Surprisingly, that wasn’t even their main objective, nor their most fruitful discovery. Authors E.M. Mudge, S.J. Murch, and P.N. Brown set out to test the hypothesis that the amount of THC and CBD – nor their respective ratios – affect the distinctiveness of the effects of each individual strain but rather, by a broader spectrum of yet unknown compounds.
The research also showed that the diversity in the cannabinoid content of strains bred to be high THC alone decreased significantly, displaying the effects of what they call “Domestication Syndrome”. This decrease not only includes CBD but also some or most of the 21 unidentified cannabinoids.
Finally, researchers concluded that further research is expected to comprehend what the mysterious cannabinoids are and how they shape the impacts of cannabis. To put simply, CBD and THC are only two pieces of the puzzle.
Photo by David Clode via Unsplash