In Nature, researchers tell of a test of a form of cannabis that could be 30 times more potent than standard doses of THC. We read of the test on mice: “In the cannabinoid tetrad pharmacological test, 9-THCP induced hypomotility, analgesia, catalepsy and decreased rectal temperature indicating a THC-like cannabimimetic activity.”
The Metro blows some smoke up its own backside: “the stoned rodents also experienced a drop in the internal temperature of their bottom – which is not generally acknowledged to be the most popular effect of weed among the humans who choose to smoke it.” No doofus. Rectal temperature is used on mice because researchers are seeking evidence of changes in core body temperature, and whereas pulmonary artery temperature measurement is the ‘gold standard’ for such measuring internal body heat, it’s easier and cheaper to insert a thermometer inside a mouse’s arse than to insert a pulmonary artery catheter.
So much for the reporting. What of the weed, named tetrahydrocannabiphorol (THCP)?
The authors assessed the ability of THCP to bind to human cannabinoid receptors found in the endocannabinoid system by sending the compound to a lab to be tested in a tube. The endocannabinoid system’s job is to keep our body in homeostasis, or equilibrium, and it regulates everything from sleep to appetite to inflammation to pain and more. When a person smokes marijuana, THC overwhelms the endocannabinoid system, latching on to cannabinoid receptors and interfering with their ability to communicate between neurons. THCP bound strongly to both receptors – 33 times more than THC does, and 63 times more than another compound called THCV. The finding led the authors to wonder if THCP might explain why some particularly potent cannabis varieties have a stronger effect than can be explained by the presence of THC alone.
The Italian researchers re interested in the drugs anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant and anti-epileptic activity, which are typical of CBD.