CBD (cannabidiol) is the second most well-known phyto-cannabinoid after THC and generally the second most prevalent phyto-cannabinoid in the cannabis flower. As it is not psychotropic, CBD is not subject to the Narcotics Act. A doctor’s prescription is required however due to its known pharmacological effects. CBD binds to many different receptors (‘dirty pharmacology’) and thereby predominantly displays antipsychotic, anxiolytic, anti-inflammatory, antiemetic and spasmolytic effects. In the US, CBD is currently hailed as the latest super-ingredient within the wellness industry and this trend is also picking up in Europe. However, consumers should be aware of the various quality characteristics presented here.
Chemische Summenformel: C21H30O2
Molekulargewicht: 314,2246 g / mol
Siedepunkt: 157° C
CBD (cannabidiol) is the second most well-known phyto-cannabinoid after THC and generally the second most prevalent phyto-cannabinoid in the cannabis flower.
Unlike THC, CBD is not psychotropic, i.e. it does not evoke euphoria or other altered states of consciousness. CBD even reduces the psychotropic effect of THC.1 It is therefore ideal for the treatment of children, the elderly and patients who prefer to keep their minds clear. CBD is not subject to the Narcotics Act, nevertheless it is a prescription drug when used therapeutically.2
CBD predominantly acts as an antipsychotic, anxiolytic, anti-inflammatory, antiemetic, and spasmolytic, and functions partially indirectly through modulation of the THC / CB2 receptor interaction, or by inhibiting the enzymatic degradation of anandamide, an endocannabinoid.
Further mechanisms of actions are recognised for CBD, including agonistic action at the serotonin receptor 5-HT1 and the receptor GPR55, as well as blockage of the μ-opioid receptor.3,4,5
Knowledge regarding the ‘dirty pharmacology’ of CBD continues to grow; a study published in 2018 found that cannabidiol enhances morphine antinociception, reduces NMDA-mediated seizures and reduces stroke damage, all through antagonistic binding to the sigma 1-receptor.6
Numerous scopes of therapeutic application have been outlined for cannabidiol, including the treatment of sleep disorders. Its antioxidant and other properties described above offer new prospects7 for the treatment of certain chronic inflammatory diseases, neuro-inflammation, epilepsy, dizziness, vomiting, anxiety and schizophrenia, as well as neurodegenerative or cancerous diseases. Any of these require medical differential diagnosis and individual risk-benefit assessment. The European Commission recently granted CBD an ‘orphan drug status’ for the treatment of Dravet syndrome and perinatal asphyxia.
Consumers need to pay attention to quality differences when purchasing CBD products: In addition to the specified CBD concentration, many CBD extracts differ with respect to other active ingredient content, e.g. other cannabinoids and terpenes. A corresponding certificate of analysis (COA) should be provided by the distributer at least upon request of the customer.
A natural CBD full spectrum extract from cannabis – in contrast to CBD-isolates acquired from alcohol-based extraction processes – contains a wide range of other natural cannabinoids besides CBD, including terpenes, flavonoids, antioxidants and other phytonutrients, as well as other secondary plant-based substances. The combined use of all these plant ingredients is intended to increase the effectiveness of the product. This is also known as the “entourage effect” of phyto-cannabinoids.8,9
The chemical extraction process furthermore often results in solvent residues being present within isolates. Even if – according to a certificate of analysis – a product appears to be free of solvents, heavy metals and other potentially hazardous ingredients, analyses carried out by an external laboratory tends to be more reputable than those done by the companies themselves.
CBD is utilised for the following ailments:10
- Anxiety disorders
- Multiple sclerosis
- Psychotic and schizophrenic disorders
The known useful therapeutic effects of CBD are:
- Anticonvulsant / muscle relaxant
 Cannabis: Verordnungshilfe für Ärzte von Franjo Grotenhermen; Klaus Häußermann – ISBN 10: 3804737595 – ISBN 13: 9783804737594
 Ibeas Bih C, Chen T, Nunn AVW, Bazelot M, Dallas M, Whalley BJ. Molecular Targets of Cannabidiol in Neurological Disorders. Neurotherapeutics. 2015;12(4):699-730. doi:10.1007/s13311-015-0377-3
 Rodríguez-Muñoz M, Onetti Y, Cortés-Montero E, Garzón J, Sánchez-Blázquez P. Cannabidiol enhances morphine antinociception, diminishes NMDA-mediated seizures and reduces stroke damage via the sigma 1 receptor. Mol Brain. 2018;11(1):51. doi:10.1186/s13041-018-0395-2
 Zhornitsky S, Potvin S. Cannabidiol in humans-the quest for therapeutic targets. Pharmaceuticals (Basel). 2012;5(5):529-552. doi:10.3390/ph5050529
 E.B R, Russo EB. Taming THC: Potential Cannabis Synergy and Phytocannabinoid-Terpenoid Entourage Effects. Vol 163.; 2011:1344-1364. doi:10.1111/j.1476-5381.2011.01238.x
 Pamplona FA, daSilva LR, Coan AC. Potential clinical benefits of CBD-rich Cannabis extracts over purified cannabidiol (CBD) in treatment-resistant epilepsy: observational data meta-analysis. Front Neurol. 2018;9:759. doi:10.3389/FNEUR.2018.00759
 CBD: Ein Cannabinoid mit Potenzial. Franjo Grotenhermen ISBN: 9783037885376