Cannabinoid Clinic: THCV

 

Welcome to Cannabinoid Clinic, an education project powered by Higher Learning LV. This series provides cannabis and hemp industry professionals with easily digested cannabinoid profiles that ask little of your time—but provide plenty of science-based information.


There are two categories of cannabinoids: Phytocannabinoids and endocannabinoids. Phytocannabinoids are those produced by cannabis/marijuana/hemp, while endocannabinoids are made by the human body. This series covers both.


Tetrahydrocannabivarin (THCV) is the result of THCVA, the varin-specific acidic precursor for this cannabinoid (stay tuned for more about varins below). First discovered in 1971, it is a peculiar psychoactive cannabinoid for which considerably less research has been conducted than for its chemical cousin delta-9 THC. The most notable characteristic of THCV is that it causes a decrease in appetite.


THCV is considered a minor cannabinoid because it is typically present in low volumes in loose-leaf and other cannabis products. It is most common in examples of the cannabis plant that are considered sativa in nature, conveying energy, creativity, mental stimulation, and clarity.


In low doses, THCV is not only non-psychoactive, but actually acts as a buffer to the psychotropic effects of delta-9 THC (similar to how cannabidiol, or CBD, performs this same role). In potent doses, however, THCV is significantly psychoactive; many anecdotal testimonies claim even more so than delta-9 THC. Researchers claim that the psychoactivity resulting from THCV features a shorter onset period than delta-9 THC, but also does not last as long.


Like many other cannabinoids and terpenes, THCV has been shown to deliver reductions in inflammation, making it of potential value to literally dozens of conditions and disorders. Antioxidative properties may make this cannabinoid of value in the treatment of diseases such as Parkinson's. 


Because of its relatively unique ability to decrease appetite (the opposite effect of delta-9 THC), THCV may prove of value in treatment of a number of conditions, including diabetes, obesity, and a number of eating disorders. Due to its antioxidant properties, this cannabinoid may be helpful for those suffering conditions such as Parkinson’s disease. It also features distinct properties that may be helpful to epilepsy patients.


The most common way to consume THCV is tinctures, capsules, and edibles like gummies. Patients and consumers should be warned that cannabis and hemp products rich in THCV are rare and often relatively expensive. Most cultivars of loose-leaf cannabis feature little or no THCV.  


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