List of cannabinoids and their effects

List Of Cannabinoid

List Of Cannabinoids And their Effects


Cannabis produces a variety of compounds known as plant cannabinoids, many of which have not been detected in any other plant. How many, exactly? It’s hard to say. You’ll often see people report that there are dozens or even 100+ plant cannabinoids produced by cannabis. But it’s difficult to know the precise number. Most of them are present at very low levels, especially in commercial cannabis products, making it difficult for scientists to accurately detect them. The important point is that there are many. Let’s take a closer look at some of the major cannabinoids that can be found in cannabis products.

8 major cannabinoid acids Produced by cannabis

Cannabis doesn’t directly make the most famous cannabinoids associated with the plant, THC, and CBD. Instead, it synthesizes several cannabinoid acids (Figure 1). These cannabinoid acids must be “activated” (decarboxylated), usually by heat, to yield the compounds that most consumers are after (THC or CBD). But in addition to THCA and CBDA, there is a number of related cannabinoid acids that can be produced by cannabis. These are:

  • CBGA (Cannabigerolic acid)

  • THCA (Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinolic acid)

  • CBDA (Cannabidiolic acid)

  • CBCA (Cannabichromenenic acid)

  • CBGVA (Cannabigerovarinic acid)

  • THCVA (Tetrahydrocanabivarinic acid)

  • CBDVA (Cannabidivarinic acid)

  • CBCVA (Cannabichromevarinic acid)

THCA and CBDA are usually the most abundant cannabinoids in strains. The others shown in Figure 1 are normally present at much lower levels. The major cannabinoid acids include CBGA, THCA, CBDA, and CBCA. CBGA is the starting compound that enzymes in the plant used to make the other three. In addition to these, there are an equal number of corresponding “V” compounds with slightly shorter chemical structures: CBGVA, THCVA, CBDVA, and CBCVA.

Cannabinoid acids are not known to produce intoxicating effects like THC. But they do have a variety of interesting properties. For example, many cannabinoid acids have antibiotic or insecticidal properties. This is likely related to the reason Cannabis produces these compounds in the first place: to defend itself.

Following decarboxylation, each of the cannabinoid acids yields a corresponding cannabinoid compound:

  • CBG (Cannabigerol)

  • THC (Δ9–tetrahydrocannabinol)

  • CBD (Cannabidiol)

  • CBC (Cannabichromene)

  • CBGV (Cannabigerivarin)

  • THCV (Tetrahydrocannabivarin)

  • CBDV (Cannabidivarin)

  • CBCV (Cannabichromevarin)

Disclaimer: This article is originally published on

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