Delta 8 / 9 / 10 / 11… How Many THCs Are Out There?

We all know about delta-9 THC, the main psychoactive cannabinoid of the cannabis plant. Recently, delta-8 THC started making a strong impression as an alternate form of THC, with slightly different benefits. We even know there’s a delta-10 THC. So, how many THCs are there out there, and how are they similar?

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Delta-9 and delta-8 THC

The first guy to synthesize THC was chemist Roger Adams. He was the first to identify the compound in the 1940’s, although he was not able to isolate it. This was done in 1964 by Raphael Mechoulam and his team, although Adams was the first to isolate CBD. Mechoulam was able to benefit from Israel’s less restrictive cannabis research laws. He and his team wanted to figure out what it was in Indian hash that was making people act so intoxicated.

The answer, he found, was THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol. To be more specific, he isolated the most common form of THC found in cannabis plants, delta-9 THC. Delta-9 THC itself does not actually exist heavily in any cannabis plant, but is instead produced from THCA which decarboxylates (generally through sun exposure or heat) to become delta-9 THC. It was learned in the 1940’s that there were many different forms of THC, although how many THCs can be created, was a mystery (and still is).

In the last year or so, another form of THC has been getting more popular, partially due to the 2018 US Farm Bill which legalized the cultivation of industrial hemp for certain purposes. As a form of THC which does not exist in large enough amounts on its own, delta-8 THC requires being sourced from delta-9 THC. It’s formed through an oxidation process, which results in a compound that has shown in testing to have less psychoactive response, to produce less associated anxiety and panic symptoms, to be effective for use with nausea and vomiting due to illness and treatments, and which, due to the oxidation process, is actually more stable over time than delta-9.

Delta 8 THC Vape Cartridges - Only $10/cart
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Some even say it produces a very clear high, and heightens the senses of users. And since it can be sourced from any delta-9 THC, it can just as easily be sourced from delta-9 coming from industrial hemp, as from high-THC marijuana, creating a legal loophole for production. Even this THC isn’t quite as ‘new’ as current interest would have you believe, though. Delta-8 THC has been known about since it was fully synthesized in 1965 by Raphael Mechoulam.

Mechoulam even published research back in 1995 showing how delta-8 THC eradicated the nausea and vomiting of children receiving cancer treatments. Yet, of course, we didn’t hear much about it. What makes delta-8 THC relevant currently, is that it’s being produced in the very gray area of the 2018 Farm Bill, which has therefore permitted – to a degree – legal sales of THC (or gray-area sales). The two compounds are nearly identical, and have similar properties, it is only the sourcing of delta-8 THC from hemp that creates this legal quandary.

Delta-10

What else have we missed about THC? How many other THCs might exist?We know about delta-9 and delta-8, and that they’ve both been around for awhile. We even recently found out about delta-10 THC. Delta-10 also isn’t new, having been first synthesized back in the 1980’s. In fact, it was discovered accidentally by the contamination of outdoor flowers used to make concentrates, with flame retardant chemicals for dealing with wildfires in California, where the company creating the extracts was located.

The company, Fusion Farms, wasn’t aware that their product had issues and went on with the extraction process, just to find strange crystals forming. It was eventually realized that these strange crystals were another form of THC, this time delta-10. Delta-10 THC is an artificial cannabinoid that was formed when delta-9 THC was converted after being exposed to a catalyst, in this case the flame retardant material, though there could be less toxic catalysts out there.

As far as what delta-10 does, it’s hard to say. It came into existence through an accident, and has not been through even the compulsory scientific research that delta-9 THC and delta-8 THC have. It likely has similar mechanisms of action in the brain, attaching to CB1 and/or CB2 receptors, but nothing specific about the molecule can be said, other than that the double bond (the delta) exists on the 10th carbon atom of the chain, rather than the 9th like delta-9, or the 8th, like delta-8. That is, in fact, what defines a type of THC, where the double carbon atom is located.

Delta-3, delta-4, delta-6, delta-7

Now we know that the THC molecule can exist in different forms, depending on where the carbon double bond is located, which is what brings up the whole question of how many THCs are out there. Could that double bond be located on the 3rd, 4th, or even 7th carbon atom? Seems like it.

Delta-3 THC, delta-4 THC, and delta-7 THC were all identified during the 1940’s when THC was first starting to be synthesized in laboratories by researchers like Adams. These are entirely synthetic, and developed as a way to establish a synthetic form of a plant product (likely to get around patent issues). Though research has been done into these compounds, it has remained limited. It is generally thought that these synthetic isomers are less potent than delta-9 or delta-8 THC, but this may not be true all the time.

The more we go into the question of how many THCs currently exist, or can be created, the more we find that there are quite a few, with plenty we don’t know about yet or haven’t worked with. And some, just like the original finding of THC, that just don’t get the attention they deserve.

Take this, for example, a study from 1980 highlighting how delta-6 THC, and some other cannabis compounds, effect mice brains. The study found that several cannabinoids or isomers are correlated with an up-to-60 minute cataleptic effect in mice. Catalepsy is a disorder in which the body doesn’t respond to external stimuli, with overall muscular rigidity, and an inability to move.

While delta-6 THC didn’t create the highest correlation with cataleptic symptoms, it did show to be one of the most potent cannabinoids in the brain. The study authors concluded that psychoactive features of cannabinoids and their metabolites, are more likely related to structural features than pharmacokinetic ones. This was back in 1980, and yet a look at the medical cannabis landscape of the last few decades shows a massive deficit in follow-up research.

11-hydroxy-THC

We know that THC molecules vary between each other slightly, but what about once THC is metabolized by the body? The reason that THC edibles are so strong is the conversion of THC into 11-hydroxy-THC. When delta-9 THC (C21H30O2) is ingested, it gets processed into 11-hydroxy-THC (C21H30O3) by way of the liver and digestive tract. The difference is explained well by the publication Leafly’s primary researcher, Nick Jikomes:

“The real difference between edibles and smoking or vaping is that with edibles, a much larger fraction of Delta-9-THC makes it to the liver first. There it gets converted to 11-hydroxy-THC.” He continues, “So in other words, if you smoke or vape, the ratio of 11-hydroxy-THC to Delta-9-THC is quite low, and if you take an edible it’s much higher.” This helps explain why edibles can cause very intense highs, and why the high lasts so much longer. 11-hydroxy-THC is not naturally occurring, and requires the body to break down THC to produce it. Perhaps future research will find a way to synthesize it, without consumption.

This isn’t a standard version of THC, but it does go to show the other possibilities out there when asking the question of how many THCs there are.

cannabis medicine - using the many THCs for our own benefit

So, how many THCs are there?

With the ability to synthesize cannabinoids, the ability to create new versions of THC has been available for some time. Research into THC back in the 40’s identified much of this information, but little has been done to effectively use it. By now, years of intense research into THC should have been done, but decades after these forms of THC were found, we’re still asking the question of how many THCs are even out there. The reason things are this way is highly debatable, with some people holding true to beliefs about inherent drug dangers and black markets, a holdover from previous smear campaigns, no doubt.

Others might argue that the pharmaceutical industry couldn’t compete with a plant, and found it easier to suppress information about it, essentially ending research, or bringing it down to a trickle throughout the world, until it could be monetized properly. The latter argument makes way more sense considering the new pharma-cannabis industry, which seems to have no problem with people using the drug and sees no reason for danger, so long as the money goes into pharmaceutical pockets. Of course, that’s just my interpretation.

It could be that hundreds of versions of THC can be created, or maybe there are strictly 15. In a research field so wide open, with so much to investigate, it’s impossible to say just how many THCs exist. It’s not even possible to say if delta-9 is the strongest form, or what other kinds of psychoactive and medical effects could be hidden therein. One of the more interesting things to understand about THC, is just how much more there is to learn about THC.

Conclusion

The same issue that comes up with delta-8 THC is also relevant with other forms of THC that are sourced from delta-9. They can come from high-THC marijuana, or low-THC hemp, which means these compounds are falling into a legal gray area in many places like the US and the UK. They are being ruled illegal by drug scheduling legislation that names THC and all its derivatives as narcotics, but at the same time, they are starting to be sourced from places that are not considered illegal, making it questionable whether products made from them would therefore be legal or not.

Either way, the world of THC is opening up more and more, and proving to be a surprising and interesting place. In the next few years we might even get a better answer to the question of how many THCs are out there in the world.

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How Many THCs – Resources

It’s Not Your Parents’ THC – Welcome Cannabidiolic Acid Methyl Ester
Delta-8 THC Exploits Fantastic Legal Loophole

Why Using THC Is Good for the Eyes
New Vaping Bill: Effective March 2021 No More Mail Order Of CBD & Delta-8 THC Vape Carts
What is DELTA 8 THC (FAQ: Great resource to learn about DELTA 8THC)

Delta-8 THC Contaminated Products, or Just Bad Press?
11-hydroxy-THC and the Power of Edibles
The CBD Flowers Weekly newsletter (your top resource for all things smokable hemp flowers).  Hemp-Derived DELTA 8 THC Products Now Available Online Best Delta-8 THC Vape Bundles – Winter 2021
New Vaping Bill: Effective March 2021 No More Mail Order Of CBD & Delta-8 THC Vape Carts

The Delta 8 Weekly Newsletter (All you need to know about Delta 8 thc) and the Best Delta 8 THC Deals. The Bizarre History and Promising Future of Delta 10 THC
What Are Delta-8 THC Moon Rocks And Where To Get Them? INSIGHT: Delta-8 THC Pricing – The Fair Price for Delta 8 Vapes, Tinctures, Gummies and The Many Faces of Tetrahydrocannabinol – Different Types of THC and Their Benefits
Delta-8 THC and the UK: Is It Legal?
Delta 8 Update: Shipping Vape Ban Goes Into Effect Soon. Are You Ready? Delta 8 Flowers – Milder Than Cannabis, But Very Relaxing and Uplifting Now it’s the time to Stock-Up on Delta-8 THC Products

Disclaimer: Hi, I’m a researcher and writer. I’m not a medical professional, I have no formal legal education, and I’ve never been to business school. All information in my articles is sourced from other places which are always mentioned, and all opinions stated are mine, and are made clear to be mine. I am not giving anyone advise of any kind, in any capacity. I am more than happy to discuss topics, but should someone have a further question or concern, they should seek guidance from a professional in the relevant field for more information.

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Tuesday, February 2, 2021 Headlines | Marijuana Today Daily News

Marijuana Today Daily Headlines
Tuesday, February 2, 2021 | Curated by host Shea Gunther

// Three US senators announce plans for major federal marijuana reform (Marijuana Business Daily)

// Virginia Marijuana Legalization Bills Sail Though Committees As Key Friday Deadline Nears (Marijuana Moment)

// Black entrepreneurs are underrepresented in Michigan’s recreational marijuana industry (Detroit Metro Times)


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// Top Minnesota Lawmakers File Marijuana Legalization Bill For 2021 (Marijuana Moment)

// West Virginia awards medical cannabis dispensary licenses many to MSOs (Marijuana Business Daily)

// Biden’s USDA Takes First Meeting With Hemp Industry To Learn About Market Needs (Marijuana Moment)

// Arizona’s new recreational cannabis firms see strong sales possible supply issues on horizon (Marijuana Business Daily)

// New Jersey Lawmakers Approve Clean-Up Marijuana Bill To Resolve Governor’s Underage Concerns (Marijuana Moment)

// Idaho Lawmakers Approve Resolution That Would Quash 2022 Marijuana Legalization Initiatives (Marijuana Moment)

// Oregon first U.S. state to decriminalize possession of hard drugs (CTV News (AP))

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Tuesday, January 19, 2021 Headlines | Marijuana Today Daily News

Marijuana Today Daily Headlines
Tuesday, January 19, 2021 | Curated by host Shea Gunther

// Biden Taps Marijuana Legalization Supporter To Lead Democratic National Committee (Marijuana Moment)

// New York Governor Releases More Details On Marijuana Legalization Proposal (Marijuana Moment)

// Feds To Send Marijuana And Hemp Samples To Labs As Part Of Large-Scale Testing Accuracy Study (New Cannabis Ventures)


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// Feds To Send Marijuana And Hemp Samples To Labs As Part Of Large-Scale Testing Accuracy Study (Marijuana Moment)

// Cannabis MSO Cresco prices Canadian share offering to raise $125 million (Marijuana Business Daily)

// Village Farms Raises $135 Million (Green Market Report)

// Washington state forms compliance group to assist marijuana businesses (Marijuana Business Daily)

// Akerna Reveals Top 5 Cannabis Sales Days of 2020 (Cision PR Newswire)

// Local Massachusetts Lawmakers Unanimously Approve Psychedelics Decriminalization Measure (Marijuana Moment)

// USDA Releases Final Rule For Hemp Two Years After Crop Was Federally Legalized (Marijuana Moment)

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Tuesday, January 5, 2021 Headlines | Marijuana Today Daily News

Marijuana Today Daily Headlines
Tuesday, January 5, 2021 | Curated by host Shea Gunther

// Illinois Governor Announces Half A Million Marijuana Expungements And Pardons (Marijuana Moment)

// Illinois Adult-Use Cannabis Sales Surge 15% in December to End First Year at $669 Million (New Cannabis Ventures)

// Incarcerated Patients Have A Right To Use Medical Marijuana New Mexico Judge Rules (Marijuana Moment)


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// Steve DeAngelo Parts Ways With Harborside (Green Market Report)

// Recreational use of marijuana now legal in Montana (KBZK 7)

// AZ Dispensaries Likely to Begin Cannabis Sales Before April (AZ Marijuana)

// Lack of standards dubious business practices threaten to upend cannabis testing industry (Marijuana Business Daily)

// Farmers lose hope – and money – in race to build Maine’s hemp market (Portland Press Herald)

// Best Music Playlists For Psychedelic Therapy Are Explored In New Johns Hopkins Study (Marijuana Moment)

// Veterinarians Can Consult On Marijuana And CBD Therapy For Pets Under Michigan Governor-Signed Bill (Marijuana Moment)

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Friday, November 20, 2020 Headlines | Marijuana Today Daily News

Marijuana Today Daily Headlines
Friday, November 20, 2020 | Curated by host Shea Gunther

// Mexican Senate Passes Bill To Legalize Marijuana Nationwide (Marijuana Moment)

// New Jersey Senate And Assembly Committee Pass Marijuana Sales Bills Despite Pushback From Equity Advocates (Marijuana Moment)

// Rhode Island Considers Legalization to Solve Budget Crisis (High Times)


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// $6 billion question: Which states are likely to legalize recreational marijuana in 2021? (Marijuana Business Daily)

// Cresco Labs Delivers Another Blowout Quarter (Green Market Report)

// Harborside Q3 Gross Revenue Increases 21% Sequentially to $19.6 Million (New Cannabis Ventures)

// Ayr Strategies Q3 Revenue Increases 61% Sequentially to $45.5 Million (New Cannabis Ventures)

// TILT Holdings Q3 Revenue Increases 5% Sequentially to $40.4 Million and Company Divests Blackbird Subsidiary (New Cannabis Ventures)

// Decriminalize marijuana says NC racial justice task force created by Gov. Cooper (McClatchy DC)

// Madison Wisconsin will stop arresting people for marijuana possession (Leafly)


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8 Things You Didn’t Know Could Be Made From Hemp

Hemp is a variety of the cannabis Sativa plant, which is known as a good source of industrial fiber, as well as oils and medicine. CBD products that are slowly entering the mainstream market also come from hemp, and more and more users are vouching for the benefits that they reap from it. To take […]

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Tuesday, October 20, 2020 Headlines | Marijuana Today Daily News

Marijuana Today Daily Headlines
Tuesday, October 20, 2020 | Curated by host Shea Gunther

// Virginia’s limited medical marijuana program launches (Marijuana Business Daily)

// Missouri launches medical marijuana sales; market could hit $650 million a year (Marijuana Business Daily)

// Portland City Council votes to grant licenses to most marijuana store applicants (Portland Press Herald)


These headlines are brought to you by Curaleaf, one of the leading vertically-integrated cannabis operators in the U.S. With legal medical and adult use marijuana dispensaries, cultivation sites, and processing facilities all over the United States, Curaleaf has served more than 350,000 medical cannabis patients and looks forward to helping many more long into the future. Swing over to Curaleaf.com to learn more about this very cool company!


// New York Will Legalize Marijuana By April And Regulate CBD-Infused Drinks, Governor’s Advisor Says (Marijuana Moment)

// DEA Attempts To Block New Cannabis Product After It Draws Similarities To Marijuana (WFSU Public Media)

// Vertosa Partners with Pabst Labs to Debut Pabst Blue Ribbon Cannabis-Infused Seltzer (Cannabis Business Times)

// Alberta lifting retail cannabis store cap in November (Marijuana Business Daily)

// USDA Approves Hemp Plans For Six Additional States And Three Indian Tribes (Marijuana Moment)

// Cannabis company Acreage repays 60%-interest loan (Marijuana Business Daily)

// Another New Jersey Poll Shows Marijuana Legalization Passing By A Huge Margin (Marijuana Moment)


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Tuesday, September 29, 2020 Headlines | Marijuana Today Daily News

Marijuana Today Daily Headlines
Tuesday, September 29, 2020 | Curated by host Shea Gunther

// Croptober Is Going Up In Smoke Amid Wildfires: Cannabis Weekly (BNN Bloomberg)

// Nebraska Activists Unveil New Medical Marijuana Initiative For 2022 Following Supreme Court Defeat (Marijuana Moment)

// Massachusetts marijuana regulators close in on cannabis home delivery plan (Mass Live)


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// In South Dakota voters have to shout twice to legalize marijuana (Leafly)

// New Jersey Marijuana Campaign Launches First Ad As Poll Shows Support For Legalization Referendum (Marijuana Moment)

// Oregon Hemp Litigation: Does Oregon’s Eviction Moratorium Apply to Cannabis Businesses? (Canna Law Blog)

// Top Illinois And Michigan Officials Give Marijuana Legalization Advice To Pennsylvania Lieutenant Governor (Marijuana Moment)

// Coronavirus outbreak has led more to support N.J. ballot question on legal weed, poll finds (NJ.com)

// iAnthus Recapitalization Dismissed By Judge (Green Market Report)

// Where to find Maine’s recreational marijuana stores (Leafly)


Check out our other projects:Marijuana Today— Our flagship title, a weekly podcast examining the world of marijuana business and activism with some of the smartest people in the industry and movement. • Marijuana Media Connect— A service that connects industry insiders in the legal marijuana industry with journalists, bloggers, and writers in need of expert sources for their stories.

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Photo: Christopher Michel/Flickr

Tuesday, September 22, 2020 Headlines | Marijuana Today Daily News

Marijuana Today Daily Headlines
Tuesday, September 22, 2020 | Curated by host Shea Gunther

// Hemp Advocates Secure Major Win In New House Government Funding Measure (Marijuana Moment)

// Texas Ban On Smokable Hemp Lifted Until 2021 Judge Rules (Marijuana Moment)

// Scott says lawmakers have ‘come a long ways’ on retail pot bill (Valley News)


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// New York Launches Process For Destroying Marijuana Conviction Records (Marijuana Moment)

// Cannabis Subscription Boxes Grow By 550% (Green Market Report)

// Canadian Cannabis Sales Accelerate in July to $232 Million (New Cannabis Ventures)

// Study: Recreational Marijuana Could Bring Connecticut $100 Million Over 4 Years (WSHU Public Radio)

// Legal Marijuana Now Party turns in signatures for official recognition in Nebraska (Cherokee Tribune & Ledger News)

// Marijuana seller’s story of ‘badass’ Mexican sisters was a cultural misstep Latinas say (Herald Mail (AP))

// Millennials Prefer Smoking Their Cannabis (Green Market Report)


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Friday, September 18, 2020 Headlines | Marijuana Today Daily News

Marijuana Today Daily Headlines
Friday, September 18, 2020 | Curated by host Shea Gunther

// Vermont Bill To Legalize Marijuana Sales One Step Away From Governor’s Desk After House Vote (Marijuana Moment)

// Marijuana vape firms say one year after vaping crisis customers turning to legal suppliers over illicit market (Marijuana Business Daily)

// ‘If someone with experience can’t get this license who can?’ Illinois Governor’s team to meet with critics of marijuana licensing process (Chicago Tribune)


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// Trulieve forks out $66 million for two Pennsylvania medical cannabis firms (Marijuana Business Daily)

// Barbados Is Inches Away From Decriminalizing Cannabis Possession (Merry Jane)

// Election 2020: All you need to know about cannabis legalization on the ballot (Leafly)

// 6 cannabis elections that changed the game (Leafly)

// Slim Majority Of Arizona Voters Support Marijuana Legalization Ballot Measure, New Poll Finds (Marijuana Moment)

// German Health Insurance Has Covered Nearly $90 Million of Medical Marijuana in 2020 (Merry Jane)

// Federal Agency Tells USDA To Keep Hemp Rules Open For Comment Even Longer (Marijuana Moment)


Check out our other projects:Marijuana Today— Our flagship title, a weekly podcast examining the world of marijuana business and activism with some of the smartest people in the industry and movement. • Marijuana Media Connect— A service that connects industry insiders in the legal marijuana industry with journalists, bloggers, and writers in need of expert sources for their stories.

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