Article by Travis Cesarone, Cannabis Life Network
Cannabis in its full spectrum is an elaborate map that two components in isolation cannot give justice to. A map consisting of an interconnected system. The discovery and explosion of CBD’s endless potential is young relative to its infamously intoxicating counterpart, THC. Beyond the wellness buzz is yet another medicinal treasure cove – Cannabigerol.
Minor domains in cannabis’ intricate structure now deserve attention.
In Canada, Whistler Medical Marijuana Corp carries its own unique THC:CBG strain, Shiatsu Kush, available to British Columbia ACMPR patients. A profile of 6-8% THC and 5-7% CBG make this an exceptionally unique chemovar.
Whereas in the United States and Europe, a select few companies do have hemp-derived CBG isolates available.
Others are working to breed stable seed lines of CBG, or hunting hemp varieties for a breed that is viable for producing extracts.
Acidic cannabigerol is also known as CBGa. This is the first cannabinoid to blossom within cannabis’s chemistry. It typically appears in minute concentrations and cannot be easily captured due to it rapidly transitioning into either THCa, CBDa, and/or CBCa. Which route it will take depends on individual growth environments including, but not limited to, acidity, light, and heat. Each strains genetic influence on its own composition plays a perpetually important role, too. Growers manipulate these traits to achieve their desired result.
Developing cannabigerol dominant cannabis and hemp varieties has been an ongoing feat for a few producers now. ‘Pheno hunting’, breeding, utilizing a two week shorter grow cycle, or lower temperatures with a higher PH are all strategies these growers have implemented. Efforts have also been made in halting certain enzymes that promote cannabinoid metamorphosis, a biological process known as isomerization.
What is “acidic” cannabigerol?
The letter “a” stands for an extra “acid,” a basic carboxylic acid. With the extra little attachment, the cannabinoid is too big to pass through your blood-brain-barrier. The unstable acidic addition breaks away after you apply heat during smoking, vaporizing, or cooking. Active cannabinoids small enough to enter your brain stay intact during a process more commonly referred to as decarboxylation.
In a majority of strains, CBGa turns into CBDa before becoming THCa. Breeds with rare, still underappreciated genetics, do not have a CBD path. Genetics and ultimately enzymes exist in these rare varieties that can quickly turn cannabigerol directly into tetrahydrocannabinol. Certain Phenotypes of GSC, for example, can carry this unusual trait.