THE CANNABIS PLANT
The botanical name for this plant is Cannabis Sativa, Indica, or Ruderalis. All of them belong to the Family: Cannabaceae. Marihuana is the name given in social standars. Medical Cannabis refers to the exploitation of the positive and healing attributes Cannabis has to offer in tackling a diverse range of afflictions.
The Plant Contains…
At least 104 types of Phyto cannabinoids, over 200 terpenes, and close to 540 different compounds; all distributed in 17 different chemical compositions.
The Phyto Cannabinoids
Like the endocannabinoids (cannabinoids produced by us) Phyto cannabinoids: Anandamide and 2 Amino-Glycerol exert their function by acting on cannabinoid receptors, CB1 and CB2, that are part of the Endocannabinoid system, which is an evolved signal system that is distributed throughout the body and is responsible for maintaining balance and regulating higher cognitive functions such as memory and learning, sleep, food intake, response to stress and pain, the mechanisms of reward and control of movement, as well as the function of the immune, gastrointestinal, cardiovascular and reproductive systems.
The Most Abundant…
Cannabinoids in the plant are 9delta-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), (psychoactive cannabinoid); & non-psychoactive phytocannabinoids: Cannabidiol (CBD) Cannabinol (CBN), Cannabigerol (CBG), Cannabicromone (CBC), Delta 9- tetrahydrocannabivarin (D9-THCA), cannabidiolic acid (CBDA).
Psychoactive component of the plant has analgesic effect, anticonvulsant, muscle relaxant, protective neuro and appetite stimulator.
The second most abundant component of the plant (40%) has analgesic, muscular relaxation, immunosuppressive, and anti-inflammatory properties at the peripheral and central nervous system levels, immunomodulatory and neuroprotective, anti-psychotic, anti-emetic, anti-epileptic, anxiolytic, anti-neoplastic and sleep regulator, also attenuates the psychoactive action of THC. It has no psychoactive activity, does not alter motor function, memory, body temperature and does not produce significant hemodynamic changes.
It is one of the most abundant phytocannabinoids in the plants natural composition, after THC and CBD, with a percentage of 0.6%. Therapeutic potential as anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, analgesic and sleep-inducing.
Therapeutic potential includes: anti-inflammatory, anti-proliferative, anti-bacterial and analgesic. It has been studied in the treatment of irritable bowel (85) (91) (92).
Lesser constituent of phytocannabinoids in the plant’s natural state (0-1.6%) since it’s the product of the oxidation of 9 delta THC, then its concentration increases as the 9-THC degrades while being stored. Its effects are still not well determined, but pre-clinical studies have shown a neuroprotective effect blocking glutamate toxicity (84) (89).
Terpenes are the compounds responsible for the characteristic odor of the plant. They act on multiple receptors in the body and modulate the action of THC. More than 200 have been documented in the plant, with 7 dominant in the different varieties. The Mircence, limonene, pinene, terpinolene, linalool and caryophyllene are considered of pharmacological interest since they have a broad spectrum of action as anti oxidants, anxiolytics, anti-inflammatories, antibacterials and antineoplastic agents.
Therapeutic potential in epilepsy, reduction in food intake and stimulating stem cells related to bone formation and repair.
THERAPEUTIC POTENTIAL OF CANNABIS MEDICINAL
The therapeutic effect of medicinal cannabis is based on the action of Phyto cannabinoids on the endocannabinoid system, which is of vital importance in the regulation and maintenance of the balance of the vital functions of the organism, both in health and in disease. The therapeutic potential of the plant, given the ubiquitous location of the cannabinoid receptors, have an extremely large number of physiological effects including: improved sleep, anticonvulsant, reduced anxiety and psychosis, decreased intraocular pressure, bronchodilator, muscle relaxant, anti-inflammatory, analgesic, anti-proliferative, and antineoplastic; which gives therapeutic properties in the treatment of symptoms associated with Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, multiple sclerosis, Tourette syndrome, complications associated with HIV-AIDS infection, hypertension, sleep disorders, gastrointestinal disorders , rheumatoid arthritis, gliomas, Alzheimer’s, fibromyalgia, dystonia, hepatitis c diabetes, and osteoporosis among others.