Tetrahydrocannabivarin (THCV)

THCV - Tetrahydrocannabivarin


Tetrahydrocannabivarin (THCV) is a homologue of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) having a propyl (3-carbon) side chain instead of a pentyl (5-carbon) group on the molecule, which makes it produce very different effects from THC. THCV is a cannabinoid receptor type 1 antagonist and cannabinoid receptor type 2 partial agonist. Δ8-THCV has also been shown to be a CB1 antagonist. THCV is an antagonist of THC at CB1 receptors and lessens the psychoactive effects of THC.

Unlike THC, cannabidiol (CBD), and cannabichromene (CBC), THCV doesn't begin as cannabigerolic acid (CBGA). Instead of combining with olivetolic acid to create CBGA, geranyl pyrophosphate joins with divarinolic acid, which has two fewer carbon atoms. The result is cannabigerovarin acid (CBGVA). Once CBGVA is created, the process continues exactly the same as it would for THC. CBGVA is broken down to tetrahydrocannabivarin carboxylic acid (THCVA) by the enzyme THCV synthase. At that point, THCVA can be decarboxylated with heat or UV light to create THCV.

THCV is prevalent in certain central Asian and southern African strains of Cannabis. Plants with elevated levels of propyl cannabinoids (including THCV) have been found in populations of Cannabis sativa L from China, India, Nepal, Thailand, Afghanistan, and Pakistan, as well as southern and western Africa. THCV levels up to 53.7% of total cannabinoids have been reported.

THC increases appetite ("the munchies") by acting as a CB1 agonist. As a CB1 antagonist, THCV has been shown to reduce appetite in clinical studies of murine models. THCV has recently been embraced by hemp product marketers as "the weight loss cannabinoid" based on reasonably compelling animal model science in this arena in the early 2000's that is now becoming more noticed and cited by cannabis researchers. Other research suggests that THCV is a new potential treatment against obesity-associated glucose intolerance with pharmacology different from that of CB1 inverse agonists/antagonists.

THVC Clinical Research

Δ9-Tetrahydrocannabivarin (THCV): a commentary on potential therapeutic benefit for the management of obesity and diabetes

Amos Abioye, Oladapo Ayodele, Aleksandra Marinkovic, Risha Patidar, Adeola Akinwekomi, Adekunle Sanyaolu | January 31, 2020 | Journal of Cannabis Research | Full Text
THC and Diabetes

Efficacy and Safety of Cannabidiol and Tetrahydrocannabivarin on Glycemic and Lipid Parameters in Patients With Type 2 Diabetes: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled, Parallel Group Pilot Study

Khalid A. Jadoon, Stuart H. Ratcliffe, David A. Barrett, E. Louise Thomas, Colin Stott, Jimmy D. Bell, Saoirse E. O’Sullivan, Garry D. Tan | September 13, 2016 | Diabetes CareVolume 39, Issue 10 | Full Text
Weight Loss THCV

Neural Effects of Cannabinoid CB1 Neutral Antagonist Tetrahydrocannabivarin on Food Reward and Aversion in Healthy Volunteers

Luke Tudge, MSc, Clare Williams, BSc, Philip J. Cowen, MD, FRCPsych, Ciara McCabe, PhD | April, 2015 | International Journal of Neuropsychopharmacology, 2015, 1–9 | Full Text
Insulin sensitivity THCV

The cannabinoid Δ9-tetrahydrocannabivarin (THCV) ameliorates insulin sensitivity in two mouse models of obesity

E T Wargent, M S Zaibi, C Silvestri, D C Hislop, C J Stocker, C G Stott, G W Guy, M Duncan, V Di Marzo, M A Cawthorne | May 2013 | Nutrition & Diabetes | Full Text
THCV Food Adversion

Synthetic and plant-derived cannabinoid receptor antagonists show hypophagic properties in fasted and non-fasted mice

Gernot Riedel, Paola Fadda, Susan McKillop-Smith, Roger G Pertwee, Bettina Platt, Lianne Robinson | April 2009 | British Journal of Pharmacology | Full Text
THC, CBD, and THCV

The diverse CB1 and CB2 receptor pharmacology of three plant cannabinoids: Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol, cannabidiol and Δ9-tetrahydrocannabivarin

R G Pertwee | January 2008 | British Journal of Pharmacology | Full Text
THC Pharmacology Studies

The psychoactive plant cannabinoid, Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol, is antagonized by Δ8- and Δ9-tetrahydrocannabivarin in mice in vivo

R G Pertwe, A Thomas, L A Stevenson, R A Ross, S A Varvel, A H Lichtman, B R Martin, R K Razdan | January 22, 2007 | British Journal of Pharmacology| Full Text
Delta-9 THCV

Evidence that the plant cannabinoid Δ9-tetrahydrocannabivarin is a cannabinoid CB1 and CB2 receptor antagonist

Adèle Thomas, Lesley A Stevenson, Kerrie N Wease, Martin R Price, Gemma Baillie, Ruth A Ross, Roger G Pertwee1 | October 3, 2005 | British Journal of Pharmacology | Full Text
THCV Science

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