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CBD (cannabidiol) is a molecule produced by the Cannabis plant. The plant produces numerous molecules such as flavonoids, terpenoids and cannabinoids. The number of cannabinoids reported to date is 113. The CBD is extracted from the inflorecence of the Cannabis plant. The CBD has antioxidant capacity (Borges et al. 2017) which is validated in our CBDERM technology. CBD (cannabidiol) is one of the most studied phytocannabinoids together with THC (tetrahydrocannabidiol).


The main difference between CBD (Cannabidiol) and THC (Tetrahydrocannabidiol) is its chemical structure (Figure 1) and this difference provides the difference at the level of physiological effect in humans.

Figure 1. Chemical structure of Cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabidiol (THC)

CBD is a molecule that does not provide the “high” effect, does not affect physiological parameters such as heart rate, blood pressure nor body temperature (Bergamaschi et al., 2011). while THC does provide the “high” effect and has physiological effects such as an increase in heart rate, low blood pressure, dizziness, dry mouth and increases appetite.

These physiological differences and their effects on humans have meant that CBD is not a globally controlled substance at a regulatory level, while THC is illegal in some countries.


The main similarities between CBD and THC are found within their chemical structure and biosynthesis. The two molecules are produced naturally and exclusively by the Cannabis plant, which is why they are called phytocannabinoids. The two molecules have the same chemical formula C21H30O2 and their biosynthetic pathway is similar since they are synthesized from the same precursor. Due to their similar biochemical structure, the molecules have similar properties such as their low solubility in water and their high solubility in organic solvents, lipids and alcohols.

 For further information, please refer to the original document.

  • Borges RS., 2017. Understanding the molecular aspects of tetrahydrocannabinol and cannabidiol as antioxidants
  • Machado Bergamaschi., 2011. Safety and Side Effects of Cannabidiol, a Cannabis sativa Constituent
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