Cannariver, a leading vertically integrated cannabis company, has just launched a range of high-potency minor cannabinoids dubbed the Ultra Series. In keeping with what the company is known for, all these super potent products are priced at under $100. However, what many might be wondering is how the potency of CBD/ minor cannabinoids relates to clinical efficacy. In other words, does efficacy always increase with higher concentrations of CBD or minor cannabinoids?
There's no promise of a clear scientific answer for that, just a few arguments on why it might be better to go for higher potency full spectrum cannabis.
Before diving into that, let's argue out the definitions of concentration versus clinical efficacy for perspective.
What is CBD Concentration?
The concentration of a drug refers to the amount of the drug in a given volume. For CBD, this usually refers to the concentration of CBD in milligrams in a given volume of solvent, usually milliliters. Hence CBD Concentration is usually expressed as mg/mL. The same applies to minor cannabinoids. Often, concentration is used interchangeably with potency, but the two mean different things.
What is CBD Potency?
If you ask Wikipedia, drug potency refers to “the measure of drug activity expressed in terms of the amount required to produce an effect (50% of) of given intensity.” How much CBD or a minor cannabinoid do you need to treat pain, sleep disturbance, anxiety, or any other symptom? That is what potency is. If you need a high concentration of a cannabinoid to achieve a certain effect then the potency of that minor cannabinoid is low.
Also, the less of a compound that you need to achieve a certain effect (clinical efficacy) then the higher the potency. Let's define clinical efficacy.
What is Clinical Efficacy?
Clinical efficacy refers to the “therapeutic effectiveness of a drug in humans.” There is an inverse relationship between the concentration of a compound and its potency as far as clinical efficacy goes. The higher the potency, the less concentration will be required to achieve clinical efficacy. This video here explains the relationship better.
Let's introduce drug dosage at this point.
What is CBD Dosage?
While dose is the amount of a drug that should be taken at a given time, dosage refers to both the amount of the drug and the frequency of administration that is needed to achieve a desirable effect. Dosage will be calculated based on the concentration of the drugs and the amount that is needed to achieve clinical efficacy. Let's compare drug concentration (dosage) to the effects (clinical efficacy) graphically.
CBD Bell-Shaped Dose-Response Curve
A dose-response curve refers to a graphical plot of drug concentration (x) against its efficacy (y). CBD, like most drugs, will display a bell-shaped dose-response curve when administered. This means that as the concentration of CBD increases, the effects become stronger until they get to maximum clinical efficacy. At this point, the administration of more CBD does not increase the therapeutic effect. If anything, the effects plateau and begin to decline after a while. This means that the efficacy of CBD and minor cannabinoids may not necessarily increase with higher concentrations.
So, why do the potency of CBD and minor cannabinoids matter? Here are five arguments that support the trend toward higher concentrations.
- Lower potency cannabinoids will require high concentrations of minor cannabinoids to achieve clinical efficacy
As mentioned above, the lower the potency of a drug the more of it that will be required to achieve the desired effect. Because minor cannabinoids are still under investigation, we are not sure of the ideal concentration that's required to achieve each and every therapeutic outcome. In this case, the more the better.
- Some conditions may require higher dosages of minor cannabinoids for clinical efficacy.
The amount of a cannabinoid that's required to treat moderate pain is not the same as that required to treat severe pain. In other words, severe conditions may require higher concentrations of minor cannabinoids and this may only be provided by higher potency cannabinoids.
- Overcoming the bell-shaped dose-response curve and entourage benefits
This is probably the most interesting argument supporting the use of high-potency minor Cannabinoids, at least theoretically.
A 2015 study compared the potential anti-inflammatory and anti-nociceptive benefits of administering CBD isolate with CBD in conjunction with minor cannabinoids. The researchers found that when minor cannabinoids were added to CBD (full-spectrum CBD), the clinical efficacy did not plateau or taper off at higher concentrations. Does this mean that higher concentrations of CBD + minor cannabinoids will continue to guarantee a greater therapeutic response?
- Is Tolerance an Issue with Minor Cannabinoids?
Tolerance means that after consuming a drug for an extended duration, one will require increasingly higher concentrations of the drug to achieve the desired effect. It is believed that THC causes tolerance over time. What happens with CBD and minor cannabinoids is unclear. Should one take an occasional break from minor cannabinoids?
- Are high-potency minor cannabinoids cheaper?
High-potency cannabinoids may not be necessarily cheaper. The price point will vary from one producer to another. However, most companies will offer bulk discounts for higher-potency cannabinoids.
Cannariver has just released a line of high-potency minor 20,000mg cannabinoids that retail at $100 or less premium. These tinctures were released in response to repeated requests from regular customers. The Ultra series includes CBD, CBN, and CBG products that are geared toward potentially relieving aches, and pains, aiding sleep, and more. The tinctures come in different flavors including Lemon Raspberry, Mango Peach, Sweet Mint flavors and Natural flavors. To learn more Cannariver Ultra Series you can check their website.