Cannabinoid biosynthesis converts plant matter to cannabinoids, a group of natural compounds found in cannabis. A variety of synthetic cannabinoids and alkyl side chains have been produced by biotechnology to achieve specific goals. There are several different types of cannabinoids, including the main ones like THC and CBD and other smaller cannabinoids like CBG and N-THC. These cannabinoids are now being developed as targets for selective breeding.
CBG Inhibits the Growth of Tumors
The cannabinoid CBG, present in marijuana, has recently been identified as a potential therapeutic agent for cancer. Although the exact mechanisms remain unknown, several studies from cannabinoid biosynthesis companies have shown that CBG inhibits the growth of tumors. These effects are associated with increased apoptosis, a process by which cells die through a buildup of ceramides.
While CBG has not been widely studied in humans, it has been found to reduce inflammation in some medical conditions, including inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and glaucoma. In addition, it has been reported to alleviate pain and regulate sleep. However, more research is needed to determine whether it has a therapeutic effect on other medical conditions.
THC Levels are Reported as a Combination of D9-THCA and D9-THC
THC, or Tetrahydrocannabinol, is one of more than 500 compounds found in marijuana. It is recognized as the primary psychoactive ingredient. The chemical is in various forms, including cannabinoid tinctures, edibles, oils, and capsules.
In addition to THC, there are 113 other cannabinoid molecules known as cannabinoids. They include cannabidiol (CBD), delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (delta-9-THC), and D9-tetrahydrocannabivarin (d9-THCV).
Cannabinoid receptors are found throughout the brain and nervous system. These receptors bind with various cannabinoid isomers to form the cannabinoid receptor complex. The endocannabinoid system is a complex cell-signaling mechanism that regulates multiple functions. One of these functions is pain, inflammation, and fever.
Non-cannabinoid Substances Affect the Endocannabinoid System
Endocannabinoid systems, a part of the G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) family, are involved in various neurotransmission pathways in the human brain. Among these pathways, cannabinoid receptors (CBR) and opioid receptors play a critical role. The two systems interact with each other, leading to substance abuse.
Several studies have shown that cannabinoid receptors play a crucial role in neuronal activity. They suppress synaptic transmission by modulating neurotransmitter release and calcium influx. In addition, they are also known to inhibit invasion, angiogenesis, and apoptosis.
The endocannabinoid system is a complex network that plays a crucial role in neuronal regulation. It is found in a wide range of tissues. Although the exact mechanism of action remains unclear, cannabinoid-dependent self-inhibition has been identified in subpopulations of neurons. For example, CB1Rs are found in the ventral striatum, inhibiting orexinergic neurons.
Varina Cannabinoids are Now Emerging as Targets of Selective Breeding
Minor phytocannabinoids are emerging as potential treatments for various human health conditions. These compounds act on the endocannabinoid system, and recent studies have shown that they may be beneficial for alleviating the symptoms of autism spectrum disorder (ASD). In particular, they have been shown to have anti-inflammatory, anti-convulsant, and anti-microbial properties. Moreover, they have also been shown to have promising therapeutic effects for treating diabetes, metabolic syndrome, and even anxiety.
The endocannabinoid system has been found to improve social functioning and anxiety-like behavior. However, pharmacological modulation of this system has consistently improved these benefits. Although there is limited data, endocannabinoid-related signaling has been implicated in the pathophysiology of neurodevelopmental disorders like autism. Therefore, identifying the major endocannabinoid components and their interactions may provide insight into how they can be exploited for new and innovative treatment applications.
Unnatural Cannabinoids With Tailored Alkyl Side Chains
Synthetic cannabinoids with tailored alkyl side chains are a class of cannabinoids discovered using a yeast-based biosynthetic pathway. These compounds are thought to derive from a microbial o-oxidation process and have alkyl side chains varying in length. Among these compounds are cannabidiol (CBC) and THC-P.
To produce these compounds, the appropriate precursors are fed to the yeast. The alkyl side chains are rearranged to achieve the desired molecule. Depending on the length of the alkyl side chain, the affinity of these compounds towards CB receptors changes. Interestingly, the longer the alkyl side chain, the less affinity for these receptors.
Biotechnology-based Production of Cannabinoids Requires a Biological System
Biotechnology-based production of cannabinoids is an exciting alternative to conventional chemical synthesis. However, it needs to be designed for feasibility and scale. To accomplish this, a new biological system is required. Currently, several microorganisms are capable of producing cannabinoids, but the biotechnological pathway of these molecules has been largely unknown. Fortunately, advances in molecular biology and biotechnology have revealed the genetic blueprint of cannabinoid synthesis and identified the essential factors involved in its enzymatic activity.