Cannabinoid, a group of terpenophenolic, is found in the Indian hemp Cannabis sativa and it often gathers in considerable amounts in the glandular trichomes of hemp. This compound has been run through many studies and tests due to the psychotomimetic – an effect on the mind that is similar to the psychotic state- effects on human. Some examples of plants that contain cannabinoids, and are often used as a stress-relieving drugs, are marijuana and hashish. The effects that humans experience from these drugs include changes in mood and perception, increased appetites and an increased heartbeat. ?9tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is found to be the compound that is responsible for the said effects. THC has also displayed some positive effects, such as: relieving headaches, stimulating an appetite, preventing vomiting and nausea while also being able to alter many brain functions (mood, consciousness, behaviour, and etc.). Being devoid from psychoactivity is a very common trait for many cannabinoids, but that does not mean that it does not posses pharmacological properties that could help humans.
The biosynthesis of cannabinoids has only been make clear as of recent studies. The polyketide pathway, giving rise to olivetolic acid (OLA) and the plastidal 2-C-methyl-D-erythritol 4-phosphate (MEP) pathway, leading to the synthesis of geranyl diphosphate (GPP), are the two biosynthetic paths that the prosecutors of cannabinoids have originated from. Hexanoyl-CoA, that is derived from the short-chain fatty acid hexanoate, by the aldol condensation with three molecules that belong to malonyl-CoA is how OLA is formed. This reaction is later catalyzed by the polyketide synthase (PKS) enzyme and and an olivetolic acid cyclase (OAC) then it catalyzes the alkylation of OLA with GPP leading to the formation of CBGA, the central precursor of various cannabinoids. Three oxidocyclases are then responsible for the diversity of cannabinoids: the THCA synthase converts CBGA to THCA, while CBDA synthase forms CBDA and CBCA synthase produces CBCA. All of the possible products are primary cannabinoids.
The endocannabinoid human system is what the biological properties of cannabinoids is rely on. The interaction between the human system helps display all the effects, whether they are positive or negative, on human. The endocannabinoid system includes two G protein-coupled cannabinoid receptors, CB1 and CB2, as well as two endogenous ligands, anandamide and 2-arachidonoylglycerol. Endocannabinoids are often tested to see how much they actually influence the physiological processing including appetite, sensitivity and fat and energy metabolism. CB1 receptors -very abundant in neurons- are present in the central nervous system, throughout the brain, and in many organ tissues (reproductive, heart, lung, etc.). This is where the cannabinoids can apply their psychotropic activities. CB2 receptors are thought to have immunomodulatory effects and to regulate cytokine activity.
Cannabis sativa is a very unique plant that comes from the diverse Hemp group. It has a lot of positives when it comes to the pharmaceutical component of it, given that Cannabinoids alone has many stress relieving components to it. It could be used in a way that would medically help those who are in actual need of it, for example patients who tend to have a small appetite. Cannabinoids could help stimulate their appetites so they could get the energy they need from their food. But, just because it comes with many positive effects does not mean that it does not carry consequences with it. The more studies and data collected on the plant itself, the higher knowledge we have of it and how to avoid its harmful components.