Opinion, test of the new Cannabinoid: THCV

What is the THCV?

THCV (tetrahydrocannabivarin) is a unique cannabinoid that is starting to get some attention. Like other cannabinoids, THCV is produced in the trichomes of the cannabis plant. It develops from the precursor cannabinoid CBGV-A. With the help of certain enzymes, CBGV-A is then converted into THCV-A (tetrahydrocannabivaric acid) and other cannabinoids. The final step needed to convert THCV-A to THCV is a process called decarboxylation, which requires the application of heat to the cannabinoids. This process simply happens when cannabis is smoked or vaporized.

THCV has several distinctive characteristics that set it apart from other cannabinoids. It has some of the psychoactive elements of THC, but is different enough to be useful on its own.

THCV and the endocannabinoid system

We've known about cannabinoids for a while, but it wasn't until the 80s that we really started to understand how they work in our bodies. With the discovery of the natural cannabinoid receptors that make up the endocannabinoid system, researchers have finally begun to make progress in understanding the physiological effects of cannabis-derived cannabinoids.

In particular, the endocannabinoid system regulates important physiological functions, including immune response, sleep, mood, and many more. Our body produces its own cannabinoids (“endocannabinoids”) which bind to specific receptors, simply called CB1 and CB2. Cannabinoids from the cannabis plant can also bind to these receptors, causing profound changes in physiological functions. THC, for example, binds to CB1 receptors in the brain, which is responsible for its characteristic high.

THCV: An Underrated Cannabinoid

Although it was discovered in 1973, THCV is one of the least discussed cannabinoids. Little research has been done on it, and unlike THC or CBD, tetrahydrocannabivarin doesn't get much mention in discussions. In fact, THCV has only recently attracted attention thanks to the boom in the cannabis industry.

In the laboratory, THCV appears to act as a CB1 receptor antagonist at low doses. This means that it inhibits the effects of THC, a quality it seems to share with CBD. At higher doses, it acts as an agonist of the same receptor, in turn producing effects similar to THC. In a sense, it combines the effects of THC and CBD, albeit in distinct ways.

However, THCV has dose-dependent interactions. At low doses, THCV functions as a CB1 antagonist, but exerts the exact opposite effect at high doses. In other words, THCV can make the psychoactive effect of cannabis more or less intense depending on the dose.

THCV and THC: What are the differences?

Given the similarity in names, some might wonder if there is any real difference between THC and THCV. Chemically, THCV differs only slightly from the better known THC. At the molecular level, THC has a 3-carbon side chain, while THCV has a 5-carbon group. Both cannabinoids have double bond isomers and 30 stereoisomers. Despite these commonalities, there are profound differences between THCV and THC.

The effect of THCV is described as intense and stimulating, clearer than that of THC, but not as long-lasting. Some believe that THCV exerts its effects solely by influencing the effects of THC. Specifically, THCV is believed to “sweeten” THC. THCV, unlike THC, is believed to suppress appetite. This makes it potentially useful as an option for weight management, but nothing is set in stone yet. THCV has a boiling point of 220°C, while the boiling point of THC is 158°C. This is important to know if you are vaping a strain rich in THCV.

Does the THCV get you high?

As mentioned earlier, the effects of THCV are dose-dependent. Therefore, if you take high doses, you will experience a pleasant high. The effect of THCV is stimulating and clearer compared to that generated by THC. This can make the THCV a great alternative during the day, when you still want to work while enjoying its nice effect. THCV can also amplify certain aspects of the effect of THC, such as euphoria and mental stimulation. It has also been shown to counter possible discomfort caused by excessive use of THC.

This cannabinoid doesn't even make you "chemical hungry". This can be a welcome side effect for consumers looking to lose weight, while it makes cannabis strains with THCV less suitable for people with certain types of dietary issues.

Finally, it is worth noting that the effect of THCV is considered to have a faster onset of effects, but a duration of about half that of THC. This makes THCV-rich cannabis strains perfect for people who desire a shorter experience.

The advantages of the THCV

THCV is a fascinating cannabinoid that has shown potential in several areas. Here are some of the potential benefits of the THCV:


THCV is often called the “slimming cannabinoid” because it can help suppress appetite and boost metabolism. This could be good news for those looking to lose weight.

Blood sugar control

THCV may help regulate blood sugar, which may benefit people with type 2 diabetes.

Bone health

THCV could help promote bone growth, which could be beneficial for people suffering from osteoporosis or other bone diseases.

Neurological health

THCV has shown potential to help protect brain cells, which could benefit people with neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson's disease.


THCV is a unique cannabinoid with huge potential. Although research is still ongoing, early results are promising. Whether you are interested in weight loss, blood sugar control, bone health, or neurological health, THCV could be a cannabinoid to consider.

It is important to note that, as with any health or wellness product, it is essential to consult a medical professional before beginning to use THCV or any other cannabinoid. Each individual is unique, and what works for one person may not work for another.

Finally, remember that the best way to learn about the THCV is to do your own research. There are many resources available, including Wikipedia articles, scientific studies, and online discussion forums. So take the time to educate yourself and find out if the THCV is the right choice for you.

all you need to know about THCV, “diet cannabis”

The world of cannabis is constantly changing, with new cannabinoids hitting the market. One of the latest to gain a lot of interest is THCV, or tetrahydrocannabivarin. This minor cannabinoid is often compared to THC, the most well-known psychoactive compound in cannabis, but it has structural differences that contribute to distinct effects.

What is the THCV?

THCV is a molecule found in cannabis that is slightly similar to THC. However, THCV has structural elements that are different, which contributes to different effects. According to Jay Denniston, Chief Scientist at BellRock Brands, THCV is a unique cannabinoid that has potential therapeutic benefits for appetite control and for providing a focused, energetic feeling of euphoria.

How does THCV compare to THC?

The comparison between THCV and THC is not straightforward. People who use THCV in combination with THC anecdotally report that THCV can lessen the intoxicating effects of THC. However, the effects of THCV alone are less clear. THCV is primarily found in cannabis products alongside THC. If the cannabinoid is isolated, purified and "put into things", it's not even clear if it's intoxicating at all.

What are the effects of THCV?

THCV is associated with several potential effects. Let's take a look at what the research says.

Reduced appetite

While most people associate cannabis with an increase in appetite, THCV may have the opposite effect. However, most of the evidence regarding THCV and appetite is based on animal research. The idea behind this is that THCV can block the CB1 receptor, which is well known for stimulating appetite, so blocking this receptor could reduce appetite.

This idea is supported by some animal studies. For example, a 2009 study suggested that THCV can reduce food intake and weight gain. A 2013 study found that it can reduce glucose intolerance associated with obesity.

However, there was no impact on appetite or body weight in these patients treated with THCV compared with the group that received a placebo.

Other effects

Although the jury is still out on the appetite-suppressive properties of THCV, preclinical animal research suggests that it may have a role in a wide range of diseases and disorders, including Parkinson's disease, psychosis, bacterial inflammation, acne, fatty liver disease, pain and epilepsy.

Human research with THCV is more limited, but a small 2015 trial among cannabis users explored its potential to reduce some negative effects of THC. The authors suggested that 10 mg of THCV may reduce the increased heart rate, subjective feeling of intoxication, and verbal recall problems caused by THC.

Is it safe to try the THCV?

While there's still a lot to learn about THCV, it seems mostly safe to try. No major side effects have been reported in the few human studies that exist, which have involved doses of up to 10 mg per day for up to 13 weeks.

However, some participants reported feeling a little more tired than usual, so it's advisable to avoid driving until you know how it affects you. And you'll definitely want to stay off the road if you're trying a product that also contains THC.

As always, it's best to speak with a healthcare professional before trying any new vitamin or supplement, including cannabis products.

Where to find the THCV?

According to Vaught, the availability of THCV has "been very limited". "There are only a limited number of plants on the market that produce viable amounts of this compound, and they have generally been difficult to grow, with low yields. The supply chain is not strong, it's a rare cannabinoid. It's expensive," says Vaught.

Vaught says he's noticed people isolating THCV from plants and infusing it into different manufactured products, like cannabis edibles and drinks. This opens the door, he adds, to increased yield and supply chain accessibility by incentivizing producers to produce more THCV.

It also paves the way for more traditional products, like flowers or vapes, that come directly from the plant (as opposed to, say, an isolate-infused edible).

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