What is a Cannabinoid?

Cannabinoids are the naturally occurring chemical compounds found in the cannabis plant. Cannabinoids are responsible, in part, for the wide array of medicinal and psychoactive effects cannabis provides. There are over 110 known cannabinoids so far with studies continuing to reveal the complex molecular structures of the cannabis plant.

Cannabinoids interact with human physiology through the endocannabinoid system (ECS), the set of receptors that function to regulate health and promote homeostasis throughout the body, you can read more about the ECS on our website here. The ECS has two primary receptors, the CB1 and CB2. The CB1 receptor binds primarily to the brain and nervous system, while the CB2 receptor interacts largely with the immune system. The cannabis plant relies on cannabinoids binding to these receptors to produce the array of potential benefits and effects. Each cannabinoid holds unique characteristics of their own that are worth examining in order to maximize the desired effects from medical cannabis. Today we’re looking at the cannabinoid CBN or cannabinol.


What is Cannabinol?

Cannabinol (CBN) is considered a mildly psychoactive cannabinoid and is known for its powerful sedative properties. When THC is oxidized, the degradation process converts THC to CBN, which may account for the sedative effect aged cannabis often carries. A 2700 year old grave excavated in China revealed preserved cannabis that contained higher amounts of CBN than any other cannabinoid.

Being a byproduct of THC, cannabinol is typically found in small amounts in most cannabis strains. However, many cannabis remedies such as topicals, edibles, capsules, tinctures, vape cartridges, sublingual sprays and more may contain higher levels of this cannabinoid. CBN was also the first cannabinoid to be isolated and was previously thought to be responsible for the psychoactive effects of cannabis before the discovery of THC.


How does CBN work?

Cannabinol has a similar chemical composition to THC and is thought to primarily bind with the CB2 receptor but may also interact with the CB1 receptor. CBN acts an agonist to the TRPV2 receptor, a naturally occurring protein that regulates several biological systems in the human body. This makes CBN potentially effective for treating pain, inflammation, bone health, controlling convulsant behavior, lowering blood pressure, as well as treating skin conditions.

High levels of CBN in any cannabis product may provide an especially effective option for treating insomnia and reducing anxiety. CBN could also be useful for inducing sleep in combination with other cannabinoids such as THC and CBD.


The Science

The pain relieving potential of CBN was studied in 2002. CBN was shown to potentially delay progression of ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease) in a 2004 study. A 2008 study focused on the antibacterial efficacy of CBN, along with other major cannabinoids, as a possible treatment for MRSA. A study from 2012 examined the possible appetite stimulating effects of cannabinol.

GreenLeaf Solutions is Bartlesville’s top rated cannabis dispensary and the only dispensary in NE Oklahoma that is owned and operated by licensed physicians. We take great pride in our award-winning cannabis flower, highest quality products, and the absolute best patient service. Any of our knowledgeable budtenders can answer you questions about cannabinoids and cannabis in general. We are open 10:00am to 7:00pm Monday through Saturday from. Drop in and see why we’re Bartlesville’s best cannabis dispensary!