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What is THC-P?

Updated: Feb 20

At Top Shelf Hemp Co. educating our customers is a large part of our mission. THC-P is a new buzzword. Let's take a closer look at what exactly THC-P is.

A Quick History

Scientists funded by the UNIHEMP research project discovered THC-P in 2019. Because of cannabis' status as a Schedule 1 controlled substance in the US, the study of THC-P is difficult. The majority of research on THC-P takes place abroad. Studies are underway in Isreal and Canada, however, most of what we have learned about THC-P comes out of Europe where funding for this kind of research is much more commonplace. A multi-disciplinary team of Italian scientists is responsible for the discovery of this novel cannabinoid, headed by Guiseppe Cannazza of the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia. Their findings were published in late 2019 in the journal Nature.

How is THC-P Different from Marijuana?

Δ9-Tetrahydrocannabiphorol or THC-P is found naturally in trace amounts in cannabis. Its effects are similar to that of ∆9 THC only magnified. As previously mentioned, A smaller dose of THC-P yields the same results. This includes both positive and negative effects on the endocannabinoid system.

Is THC-P Legal?

THC-P is available across the United States. At the state level, its legal status is contingent. Every state has its own laws and regulations regarding alternative cannabinoids. In the past the federal government's position on alternate cannabinoids has been confusing, placing CBD and marijuana in the same category of drugs. With the passing of the 2018 Farm Bill, the federal government legalized hemp-derived cannabinoid products as long as products maintain less than 0.3% Delta 9 THC. Delta 9 THC is the primary psychoactive cannabinoid in cannabis. It’s recommended you check state laws before purchasing THC-P in your state.

The Science

THC-P or (-)-Trans-Δ9-tetrahydrocannabiphorol (Δ9-THCP, (C7)-Δ9-THC, and THC-Heptyl), is a potent phytocannabinoid. It readily binds with CB1 and CB2 receptors in the endocannabinoid system. It is structurally similar to ∆9 THC. The major difference is a heptyl side chain rather than pentyl side chain. To help visualize the difference, think of it as having a longer tail than ∆9 THC. It's theorized that this is the key difference as to why THC-P has as much as a 30x higher affinity for binding to receptors when compared to ∆9 THC. This is where the claim that THC-P is around 30x more potent than ∆9 THC originates. Since its discovery, scientists have also discovered CBD-P and ∆8 THC-P(JWH-091). Not much is known yet about these compounds other than CBD-P also occurs naturally and ∆8 THC-P is considered synthetic at this time.*

Wrap Up

THC-P has a short history. Consuming THC-P certainly has its benefits. It's advisable to check your local and state law for any new developments.


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