Thursday, October 31, 2013

THC: is it for me?

Tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC for short, is a chiral molecule with 2 stereocenters. It is the main psychoactive constituent of cannabis, or marijuana. Cannabinoids are compounds that have a similar structure to THC. Marijuana has been in the news a lot lately with certain states legalizing specific small amounts and it being medically prescribed by some physicians. Some medical benefits include: pain relief, appetite stimulation (in AIDS wasting syndrome and anorexia), for glaucoma, epilepsy, easing the spasticity seen in MS and spinal cord injuries, and control of nausea and vomiting in chemo patients - just to name a few. THC also produces psychoactive effects. 
THC is a lipophilic molecule. It acts on G-protein coupled receptors, decreasing cAMP and in turn inhibiting adenylate cyclase. Some studies believe that THC has anticholinesterase action, meaning it could possibly be a form of treatment for Alzheimer's disease! Maybe Bob Marley knew what was up.


1 comment:

  1. This blog has opened my eyes to many things I did not link to chemistry. It only shows that science does run the everything. Marijuana has been a hit in the news lately, with some states legalizing it for medical use. If there really is any truth to the healing properties of THC then we are on the right track