Researchers at the University of Guelph in Canada have made pioneering advancements in the re-creation of compounds found within the Cannabis sativa plant that have anti-inflammatory properties found to be 30x stronger than currently used drugs like aspirin! Yeah you heard that right.
Flavonoids & Why You Haven’t Heard Much Of Them Until Now
You’ve no doubt heard about the effects of THC – And here on the blog we’ve talked in length about the pain-relieving and anti-inflammatory effects of the compound CBD and the other widespread health benefits of terpenes also found within the Cannabis plant , but there’s a truly massive number of other compounds that we and other scientists still don’t know much about. There’s also a lesser known family of compounds called flavonoids.
Flavonoids aren’t a new discovery & they are found in all kinds of plant matter such as vegetables and fruits – they’re responsible the colouring and also the anti-oxidant, immune system boosting benefits associated with them. In 1985 scientists found out that C. sativa make their own unique flavonoids, called Cannaflavin A & Cannaflavin B that were able to block the production of inflammatory molecules in cells – and were really good at it too!
The reason you haven’t heard of this wonder molecule is because of the fact that these cannaflavins exist within the plant in very low trace amounts, and no-one had any idea how the plant even made the things. Add on the common hurdles such as lack of general interest or funding and you’ve got your answer to why these molecules have gone under the radar.
How Advancements In Genetics Is Changing The Game
Using biochemistry and genomics the genes encoding for both Cannaflavin A and Cannaflavin B have been identified, and with it the blueprints on how to create them. The researchers are currently working alongside Anahit International Group, a Toronto-based company in order to develop and create a safe, natural alternative to non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as aspirin & ibuprofen.
This new research is a step towards a new age in how we treat chronic pain and inflammation, without any of the side effects associated with NSAIDS or opioids. Unlike other painkillers, these flavonoids target the inflammation at the source rather than interrupting pain signals going to your brain, and avoids any of the nasty psycho-active effects that are associated with the development of dependence or addiction.
- Barrett, M.L., Gordon, D. and Evans, F.J. (1985) Isolation from cannabis sativa L. of cannflavin—a novel inhibitor of prostaglandin production. Biochemical Pharmacology, 34(11) 2019–2024. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/0006295285903259.
- Rea, K.A., Casaretto, J.A., Al-Abdul-Wahid, M.S., Sukumaran, A., Geddes-McAlister, J., Rothstein, S.J. and Akhtar, T.A. (2019) Biosynthesis of cannflavins A and B from Cannabis sativa L. Phytochemistry, 164 162–171. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0031942218303819#bib69.