Effects and Benefits of Cannabinol (CBN) in Marijuana?

 In CBN Cannabinol

Research is indicating that CBN is far from mere wasted THC. On the contrary, it is showing great promise in the treatment of many health conditions, particularly:

  • inflammatory
  • autoimmune disorders.

CBN level is not determined primarily by the strain involved. Rather, CBN naturally occurs as product of THC exposed to light and heat.

So, what are Effects and Benefits of Cannabinol (CBN) in Marijuana?

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Immunomodulator

CBN is thought to possess potential as an immunomodulator because of its affinity to the CB2 receptor, which is most prevalent in the immune system. More research is warranted to investigate CBN’s specific effects on autoimmune diseases.[1]

Anti-tumor

A 2006 study found cannabinol to inhibit the growth of Lewis lung adenocarcinoma cells.[2] This supports a 1975 study that found that delta-9 THC, delta-8 THC, and CBN all have the effect of slowing the growth of this cancer.[3]

Antibacterial

Cannabinol, like the other major cannabinoids, has proven effective against antibiotic-resistant bacteria. All five (CBN, CBC, CBG, THC, and CBN) have shown potent activity against several strains of MSRA (Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus), a serious form of staph infection that has grown resistant to conventional antibiotic treatments.[4]

Sleep Aid

CBN’s best-known effect, and the one that sets it apart from the other cannabinoids, is its strong tendency to make users sleepy. Although this means that too much CBN in your recreational marijuana is a party-killer, a joint of CBN-rich herb can be just the thing for a good night’s rest.[5]

Appetite Stimulant

A 2012 study showed that CBN can increase appetite. Researchers were particularly interested in this finding because although THC had already been proven to stimulate appetite, its psychoactivity is undesirable to many patients.[6] CBN offers a pharmaceutical-free way to stimulate appetite with little or no psychoactive effects.

Other Benefits & Next Steps

Researchers have also found cannabinol to reduce seizures, stimulate bone cell growth, relieve pain, combat nausea,[7] and inhibit skin cell formation, which could be useful in the treatment of disorders such as psoriasis.[8] As with all components of marijuana, CBN research is still in its infancy. Despite the gains of recent years, cannabinoid research is still legally difficult to conduct. S.683, better known as the CARERS Act, would alleviate much of this difficulty, in part by reclassifying cannabis from Schedule 1 to Schedule 2 of the Controlled Substances Act, an acknowledgement that the plant has at least one currently accepted medical use. However, the bill has been stuck in the Judiciary Committee, whose chair, Charles Grassley (R-IA) has resisted allowing it to move forward. After a great deal of public pressure, Senator Grassley held hearings in June on allowing expanded CBD research in the interest of helping children suffering from epilepsy. Continued pressure is needed to help the countless others that could benefit from expanded research into the other cannabinoids, including the many that we have not even begun to explore.

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Sources
[1] Rom, Persidsky, “Cannabinoid receptor 2: Potential role in immunomodulation and neuroinflammation Review.” Journal of Neuroimmune Pharmocology. Springer International Publishing AG, 8 March 2013. Web. 25 Aug 2015.
[2] Bifulco, et al. “Cannabinoids and cancer: pros and cons of an antitumour strategy.” British Journal of Pharmacology. British Pharmaological Society, May 2006. Web. 25 Aug 2015.
[3] Monson, et al. “Antineoplastic activity of cannabinoids.” Journal of the National Cancer Institute. Oxford University Press, Sept 1975. Web. 25 Aug 2015.
[4] Appendino, et al. “Antibacterial cannabinoids from Cannabis sativa: a structure-activity study.” Journal of Natural Products. ACS Publications, Aug 2008. Web. 25 Aug 2015.
[5] Colbert, Mitchell. “Cannabinoid Profile: A Crash Course in CBN.” TheLeafOnline. TheLeafOnline, n.d., Web. 25 Aug 2015.
[6] Farrimond, et al. “Cannabinol and cannabidiol exert opposing effects on rat feeding patterns.” Psychopharmocology. Springer International Publishing AG, Sept 2012. Web. 25 Aug 2015.
[7] Colbert, Mitchell. “Cannabinoid Profile: A Crash Course in CBN.” TheLeafOnline. TheLeafOnline, n.d., Web. 25 Aug 2015.
[8] “Cannabinoid Profile: Cannabinol.” YouTube. SC Laboratories, 11 Nov 2011. Web. 25 Aug 2015.
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