The following is an introductory glossary of hemp, CBD, and endocannabinoid terms to help those new to hemp based CBD and the endocannabinoid system. We believe you will find this information helpful as you begin or continue your exploration of CBD and plant based health. Agonist :
a substance that initiates a physiological response when combined with a receptor.Cannabidiol (CBD) :
CBD is a phytocannabinoid discovered in 1940 and initially thought not to be psychoactive. It is one of at least 113 cannabinoids identified in hemp plants, accounting for up to 40% of the plant's extract.
Ingestible CBD : CBD products intended to be taken orally either by eating, drinking or absorbing sublingually including gelcaps, honey and tinctures.
Topical CBD : CBD products intended to be applied outside the body and absorbed through the skin including balms, cosmetics, shampoos and soaps.
Cannabinoid Receptor :
Cannabinoid receptors, located throughout the body, are part of the endocannabinoid system, which is involved in a variety of physiological processes including appetite, pain-sensation, mood, and memory.Cannabis :
is a genus of flowering plants in the family Cannabaceae. The number of species within the genus is widely disputed. Three species may be recognized: Cannabis sativa, Cannabis indica,
and Cannabis ruderalis; C. ruderalis
may be included within C. sativa;
or all three may be treated as subspecies of a single species, C. sativa. The genus is widely accepted as being indigenous to and originating from Central Asia, with some researchers also including upper South Asia in its origin.Distillate :
Extract processed to eliminate undesirable compounds such as THC. Added processing also causes loss of other phytocannabinoids and terpenes.Eicosanoids :
Signaling molecules. Eicosanoids in the endocannabinoid system are known as agonists 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2AG) and anandamide (AEA). See breakdown of the endocannabinoid System below fr additional information. Endocannabinoid System :
Also know as the ECS is a biological system found in in all mammals which is comprised of 3 parts, endocannabinoids (agonists), receptors and enzymes. The primary function of the ECS is to promote mental and physiological homeostasis from the cellular level to the organ and ultimately the organism itself. Agonists
2-Arachidonoylglycerol (2AG) : is an endocannabinoid, an endogenous agonist of the CB1 receptor and the primary endogenous ligand for the CB2 receptor. It is an ester formed from the omega-6 fatty acid arachidonic acid and glycerol. It is present at relatively high levels in the central nervous system, with cannabinoid neuromodulatory effects. It has been found in maternal bovine and human milk. The chemical was first described in 1994-1995, although it had been discovered some time before that. The activities of phospholipase C (PLC) and diacylglycerol lipase (DAGL) mediate its formation. 2-AG is synthesized from arachidonic acid-containing diacylglycerol (DAG).
Anandamide (AEA) : an endocannabinoid which is found in either the central or peripheral nervous system. These distinct effects are mediated primarily by CB1 in the central nervous system, and CB2 cannabinoid receptors in the periphery. The latter are mainly involved in functions of the immune system. The name is taken from the Sanskrit word ananda, which means "joy, bliss, delight", and amide. It is synthesized from N-arachidonoyl phosphatidylethanolamine by multiple pathways. It is degraded primarily by the fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH) enzyme, which converts anandamide into ethanolamine and arachidonic acid. As such, inhibitors of FAAH lead to elevated anandamide levels and are being pursued for therapeutic use. First described (and named) in 1992.
CB1 Receptor : Cannabinoid receptor type 1 (CB1), also known as cannabinoid receptor 1. The human CB1 receptor is found primarily in the peripheral nervous system and central nervous system. The primary endogenous agonist (signaling molecule) of the human CB1 receptor is anandamide.
CB2 Receptor : The cannabinoid receptor type 2, abbreviated as CB2, is a G protein-coupled receptor from the cannabinoid receptor family that in humans is encoded by the CNR2 gene. It is closely related to the cannabinoid receptor type 1, which is largely responsible for the efficacy of endocannabinoid-mediated presynaptic-inhibition, the psychoactive properties of tetrahydrocannabinol, the active agent in cannabis, and other phytocannabinoids (plant cannabinoids). The principal endogenous ligand for the CB2 receptor is 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG). First cloned in 1993.
FAAH (Fatty acid amide hydrolase) : FAAH is the principal catabolic enzyme for a class of bioactive lipids called the fatty acid amides (FAAs). Members of the FAAs include 2-arachidonoylglycerol and Anandimide.
MAGL (Monoacylglycerol lipase) : MAGL is the key enzyme in the hydrolysis of the endocannabinoid 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG).
For more information on the endocannabinoid system CLICK HERE.Endocannabinoids :
Substances produced by mammals from within the body that activate cannabinoid receptors. After the discovery of the first cannabinoid receptor in 1988, scientists began searching for an endogenous ligand for the receptor. Endocannabinoids are all eicosanoids.Enzyme :
macromolecular biological catalysts. Enzymes accelerate chemical reactions. The molecules upon which enzymes may act are called substrates and the enzyme converts the substrates into different molecules known as products. In simple terms, enzymes break complex molecules down. Extract :
The end product of processing hemp flower or plant to produce a substance where the desired phytocannabinoids and terpenes are present in a highly concentrated form, typically a thick, translucent fluid similar to honey. Extract Types :
The end product of processing
Broad Spectrum : Similar to full spectrum yet missing some of the desired cannabinoids and terpenes. Possibly created by starting with isolate and adding terpenes.
Full spectrum : Extract generated by using the lease invasive process to create an extract which has a phytocannabinoid and terpene profile as close to that in the parent plant or flower as possible.
Isolate : CBD extract process until the only remaining component is pure or nearly pure CBD in powder form.
Extraction method : The specific process used to extract phytocannabinoids from the parent plant or flower, primarily focused on the solvent utilized in the process. Common Extraction methods are listed below.
Alcohol Extraction : utilizes ethanol as solvent. Cheap, efficient and results in good profile. Excess alcohol needs to be evaporated and many processes see excessive loss of solvent to evaporation.
CO2 Extraction : uses liquid CO2 as a solvent. Non Hydrocarbon, benign and environmentally friendly. Difficult to control spikes and dips in temperature which impacts ph therefore degrades terpenes.
Florasol Extraction : a process which uses a new family of benign non-CFC gaseous solvents (R134a) developed to replace chlorinated fluorocarbons (CFCs).
Hydrocarbon Extraction : uses butane, hexane and pentane as solvents. These are not inherently health promoting substances.
Hemp : Cannabis with less than 0.3% THC commonly known as Sativa L. (also a common codeword for CBD on social media).
Hemp Based CBD (aka Hemp Derived CBD) : CBD extracted from Industrial hemp containing less than 0.3% THC per the 2018 Farm Bill.
Homeostsis : the balanced state of steady internal conditions maintained by all living things.
Ligand : a substance that forms a complex with a biomolecule to serve a biological purpose.
Marijuana : Cannabis plants with high levels of THC and low levels of of other phytocannabinoids such as CBD, CBG and CBN.
Phytocannabinoids : cannabinoids that occur naturally in all cannabis plants. the 16 most common of the over 110 known phytocannabinoids include:
• THC (tetrahydrocannabinol)
• THCV (tetrahydrocannabivarin)
• THCA (tetrahydrocannabinolic acid)
• CBD (cannabidiol)
• CBDA (cannabidiolic acid)
• CBN (cannabinol)
• CBG (cannabigerol)
• CBC (cannabichromene)
• CBL (cannabicyclol)
• CBV (cannabivarin)
• CBDV (cannabidivarin)
• CBCV (cannabichromevarin)
• CBGV (cannabigerovarin)
• CBGM (cannabigerol monomethyl ether)
• CBE (cannabielsoin)
• CBT (cannabicitran)
Retrograde neurotransmitters :
Retrograde signaling in biology is a process whereby the function of one part of a cell is controlled by feedback from another part of the cell, or where one cell sends reciprocal messages back to another cell that regulates it.Sublingual :
A method of taking CBD tinctures whereby the drops are placed under the tongue and absorbed to the bloodstream through the soft, permeable sublingual tissue. This method is preferred by many because of the speed of absorption. The efficiency of sublingual application increases with increased time so patience is key. Shoot for at least 1 minute, 2 minutes is even better.Terpenes :
a large and diverse class of organic compounds, produced by a variety of plants, and by some insects. They often have a strong odor and may protect the plants that produce them by deterring herbivores and by attracting predators and parasites of herbivores. Terpenes commonly found in cannabis include:
Myrcene - the most abundant terpene in cannabis, which is where it’s mostly found in nature. In fact, one study showed that myrcene makes up as much as 65% of total terpene profile in some strains. Myrcene smell often reminds of earthy, musky notes, resembling cloves. Also, it has a fruity, red grape-like aroma.
Limonen - the second most abundant terpene in all cannabis strains, but not all strains necessarily have it. As its name says, limonene gives strains a citrusy smell that resembles lemons, which is no surprise as all citrus fruits contain large amounts of this compound.
Linalool - is the terpene most responsible for the recognizable marijuana smell with its spicy and floral notes. Linalool is also found in lavender, mint, cinnamon and coriander. What’s interesting is that just like those aromatic herbs, it has very strong sedative and relaxing properties.Patients suffering from arthritis, depression, seizures, insomnia and even cancer, have all found aid in this amazing terpene.
Caryophyllene - Best known for its spicy and peppery note, caryophyllene is also found in black pepper, cinnamon, cloves, and spices like oregano, basil and rosemary. Beta-caryophyllene binds to CB2 receptors, which makes it an ingredient in anti-inflammatory topicals and creams. Caryophyllene is the only terpene that binds to cannabinoid receptors. Besides its analgesic and anti-anxiety properties, some studies have found that caryophyllene has some very promising properties when it comes to alcoholism rehabilitation.
Alpha-pinene and Beta-pinene - These two terpenes smell like pine trees and that’s also where they can be found in large amounts. Other plants rich in pinene include rosemary, orange peels, basil, parsley and cannabis of course. Like many other, pinene terpenes have an anti-inflammatory effect on humans. But more importantly, they help improve airflow and respiratory functions, while also helping to reduce memory loss related to THC. if a strain is rich in alpha and beta pinene, it can actually help with asthma.
Alpha-bisabolol - (also known as levomenol and bisabolol) has a pleasant floral aroma and can also be found in chamomile flower and candeia tree. This terpene found its use primarily in the cosmetics industry, but lately it has caught the attention of researchers since it showed medical benefits, especially in cannabis. Alpha-bisabolol proved to be effective in treating bacterial infections and wounds and is a great antioxidant with anti-irritation and analgesic properties.
Eucalyptol - Also known as cineole, eucalyptol is the primary terpene of the eucalyptus tree. It has recognizable minty and cool tones in its smell but most cannabis strains do not contain large amounts of it. It usually makes up around 0.06% of a strains complete terpene profile. This terpene has been used in cosmetics as well as medicine. When it comes to its medical value, eucalyptol relieves pain but also slows the growth of bacteria and fungus.
Humulene - Humulene was the first terpene found in hops. Its aroma contains earthy, woody and spicy notes. Besides cannabis, it can be also found in clove, sage, and black pepper. It has a variety of medical properties. Early research has shown humulene to be anti-proliferative, meaning it prevents cancer cells from growing. Also, it proved to be effective in suppressing appetite, making it a potential weight loss tool. Furthermore, like many other terpenes mentioned above, it also reduces inflammation, relieves pain and fights bacterial infections.
Camphene - The best way to describe the smell of camphene is fir needles, musky earth and damp woodlands. Camphene aroma is often mistaken with myrcene, which is that trademark marijuana smell as most of us know it. From the medical point of view, camphene has great potential. When mixed with vitamin C, it becomes a powerful antioxidant. It is widely used in conventional medicine as a topical for skin issues like eczema and psoriasis. Its greatest potential lies in its ability to lower the levels of cholesterol and triglycerides in the blood, further lowering the risk of cardiovascular diseases.
Borneol - Borneol, with its herbal minty scent, can be found in herbs like rosemary, mint and camphor. This terpene is a good natural insect repellent which makes it great in preventing diseases like the West Nile virus, being passed by ticks, fleas, mosquitoes etc. One study found that borneol kills breast cancer cells. It’s also widely used in Chinese traditional medicine, in acupuncture to be precise.
Terpineol - The aroma of terpineol can be best described as floral-like, reminiscent of lilacs, apple blossom, and a little bit citrusy. Terpineol tastes like anise and mint. Terpineol has a pleasant scent, similar to lilac, and is a common ingredient in perfumes, cosmetics, and flavors. It relaxes heavily and it’s usually the one responsible for the notorious couch lock effect. Medical benefits of terpineol also include antibiotic and antioxidant properties.
Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) :
the principal psychoactive constituent of cannabis. With chemical name (−)-trans-Δ⁹-tetrahydrocannabinol. This is the stuff that gets you high.