A Guide to Delta-8 THCV: Benefits, Effects & Products

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A Guide to Delta-8 THCV: Benefits, Effects & Products

Consumers deserve a diverse selection of cannabis products that extend beyond the commonly known CBD and THC. Minor hemp-derived cannabinoids, such as Delta-8 THCV, offer entirely distinct experiences. Delta-8 THCV, a naturally occurring cannabinoid, provides unique therapeutic benefits coupled with mild psychoactive effects. By exploring Delta-8 THCV, the industry can cater to a broader range of preferences and needs, highlighting the complexity and versatility of the cannabis plant.

This article explores Delta-8THCV's benefits, lab testing, strains, and products. 

What is Delta-8 THCV?

Delta-8 THCV is one of the hundreds of cannabinoids that naturally occur in hemp and cannabis plants. However, it appears in negligible doses, so processors generally manufacture the compound in a lab rather than naturally extracting it. 

Like other cannabinoids, Delta-8 THCV likely interacts with receptors in the body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS) to help maintain balance and prevent disease. The ECS consists of cannabinoid receptors (CB1 and CB2), enzymes, and signaling molecules, modulating physiological processes such as pain, mood, appetite, and immune response.

However, Delta-8 THCV’s ECS action may be very different from THC. Scientists must conduct more research to determine the exact mechanisms. 

What Makes Delta-8 THCV Different from “Standard” Delta-9 THC? 

Delta-8 THCV (tetrahydrocannabivarin) is chemically similar to the famous Delta-9 THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), but it has a slightly different molecular structure. This difference in structure influences how each compound interacts with the body's endocannabinoid system receptors to exhibit their effects.

Molecular Structure:

Delta-9 THC has a bicyclic structure with a five-carbon side chain. It consists of a cyclohexene ring and a benzene ring fused together. The "Delta-9" refers to the position of a double-atom bond between the molecule's ninth and tenth carbon atoms.

Delta-8 THCV also has a bicyclic structure, but it differs in the length of its side chain and the position of the double bond. THCV molecules have a three-carbon side chain, shorter than THC’s five-carbon side chain. Delta-8 THCV's double bond occurs between the eighth and ninth carbon atoms.

These structural differences impact each compound’s physiological effects. 

  • Delta-9 THC has a strong affinity for CB1 cannabinoid receptors in the brain, leading to pronounced psychoactive effects. 
  • Delta-8 THCV interacts differently with a much milder psychoactive impact. 

What Makes Delta-8 THCV Different from Delta-9 THCV?

Delta-8 THCV and Delta-9 THCV are both tetrahydrocannabivarin chemicals with three-carbon side chains. What primarily sets them apart are differences in molecular structures, sources, and legality. 

Delta-8 THCV products are generally manufactured from hemp-derived extracts, featuring a double bond between the eighth and ninth carbon atoms. Hemp-derived Delta-8 THCV products are federally permissible. 

Delta-9 THCV generally appears naturally in specific cannabis strains, with a double bond between the ninth and tenth carbon atoms. Cannabis-derived Delta-9 THCV is federally illicit. 

The chemical distinctions result in varied interactions with the endocannabinoid system, with Delta-8 THCV having milder effects.

What are Delta-8 THCV’s effects?

In 2023, researchers conducted a two-phase trial on oral Delta-8 THCV in healthy adults, revealing a favorable safety profile across all doses.

It found that certain doses significantly improved sustained attention without being dose-dependent. Higher doses indicated THC-like effects. Almost all post-dose urine screens tested positive for THC, highlighting potential cross-reactivity or false positives in drug testing.

Key Findings:

  • Favorable safety up to 200 mg
  • Improved sustained attention at 12.5, 25, and 200 mg
  • THC-like effects at 100 and 200 mg
  • Positive urine screens for THC post-dose

Some consumers also tout THCV’s anti-anxiety properties. In a placebo-controlled pilot study, researchers explored the safety and effects of repeated THCV administration in ten male cannabis users. THCV was well-tolerated, and when combined with THC, it inhibited some of THC's effects, such as increased heart rate and subjective intensity, while not significantly affecting psychotic symptoms or memory impairment.

Users Reported:

  • Fewer instances of increased heart rate
  • A lower subjective feeling of intoxication 
  • Better verbal recall issues

What are THCV’s reported therapeutic benefits?

THCV has drawn interest for its promising therapeutic applications, from appetite stimulation to neuroprotection to mood enhancement. Most research focuses on Delta-9 THCV. However, Delta-8 THCV may exhibit similar benefits as a Delta-9 THCV analog. 

Appetite suppression 

One of the primary potential advantages of THCv is its appetite-suppressing properties, making it a potential tool for weight management and obesity-related conditions. This effect stems from how THCV interacts with the ECS compared to regular THC. 

  • THC activates CB1 receptors for its trademark psychoactive effects. This action also prompts the release of hunger-promoting hormones, unleashing the munchies. 
  • THCV, on the other hand, may be a partial agonist at CB1 receptors, meaning it binds to these receptors and can both activate and block them to varying degrees. This complex relationship means THCV could have appetite-suppressing qualities.  

A few studies back this idea, earning THCV the nickname “diet weed” for its purported appetite-curbing effects.

  • In rodent studies, THCV decreases appetite, increases satiety, and up-regulates energy metabolism.
  • A 2009 study suggested that THCV may reduce food intake and weight gain.
  • A 2013 study found that THCV may reduce glucose intolerance related to obesity.

Type 2 diabetes

Human studies show THCV may also help regulate insulin levels to stabilize blood sugar levels. 

  • In a 2016 trial on patients with type 2 diabetes published in Diabetes Care, THCV significantly improved fasting glucose, pancreatic beta cell function (the cells that make insulin and ultimately fail in diabetes), and several other diabetes-associated hormones.
  • Harvard Medical School reported that THCV in marijuana led to lower levels of fasting insulin and HOMA-IR (insulin resistance), higher levels of HDL-C (high-density lipoprotein, aka “good” cholesterol), and smaller waist circumference.

Seizure, muscle tremor, and brain benefits

THCv has shown promise as an anticonvulsant medication and in neuroprotection (protecting the health of brain cells).

  • A study showed THCV can reduce the frequency and severity of seizures, both when taken as a preventative measure and when administered during the event. This effect could make it useful in managing epilepsy and muscular tremors associated with Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, and ALS.

Mood, anxiety, and addiction

People who use THCV claim it helps improve mood and focus. These mood-enhancing effects can benefit those who suffer from anxiety and addiction. 

  • In 2019, a team of investigators found Delta-8 THCV reduced nicotine consumption and withdrawal symptoms in addicted rats.
  • A report from a major marijuana testing lab found THCV reduced or even blocked panic attacks, giving it the potential to effectively manage PTSD and other mental disorders involving anxiety or stress.

ACS Cannabinoids Guide

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Are there high Delta-8 THCV strains?

Consumers won’t find naturally occurring high Delta8 THCV strains. However, Delta-8 THCV products are available as extracts in products like vapes, isolates, and edibles. 

Delta8 THCV products

Delta8 THCV is newer to the industry, yet many brands have THCV products available, including edibles, vapes, and tinctures. Here are five lab-tested THCV products to try. 

THCV Disposable Vapes by Secret Nature

These disposable and rechargeable vape pens feature live-resin hemp-derived THCV. Options include an indica and a sativa version. Users say they love the smooth taste and energy boost:

  • “Like a shot of caffeine”
  • “Helps motivate me to get my chores done”
  • “Smooth, true indica taste”

Delta-8 THCV Isolate by Delta-8 Pro

This high-viscosity THCV comes packaged in a 1-gram syringe. Once heated, such as in hot water or with a hairdryer, the oil becomes dense and easy to dispense using the plunger. The company has completed testing with third parties, and the lab report is available here

THCv-infused gummies by 3Chi

3Chi’s live-resin edibles contain 10 mg of Delta-8 plus 5 mg of THV for an uplifting and potent entourage effect. Derived from USA-grown hemp, the two-pack gummies tout the following benefits:

  • Fast-acting, potent, and long-lasting
  • Delicious blue raspberry taste
  • Vegan and cruelty-free

THCV Blend Vape Cartridge by CannaAid

CannaAid’s THCV vape cartridge contains a proprietary blend of 350 mg THCV combined with 50 mg CDT, 100 mg CBD, and terpenes. A 510-compatible ceramic core cartridge compatible with standard vape batteries provides maximum performance and flavor. The brand provides verified certificates of analysis (COAs) for all products. Fans appreciate its appetite reduction and less-potent high. 

  • “Reduced my desire to eat by almost 90% and boosts mood.” 
  • “You won’t get blasted into space, but it definitely has its place!”

Canna Slim THCV capsules

Canna Slim’s hemp-derived capsules combine CBD, THCV, and CBDV. Consumers say the capsules work effectively, keeping them “not as hungry between meals” without negative side effects. The company tests all products, with the third-party lab report available here

How is Delta-8 THCV measured and tested?

Third-party cannabis laboratories measure Delta8 THCV through potency tests in a similar method to cannabinoids like CBD and THC. 

ACS Laboratory’s protocol uses Ultra High Performance Liquid Chromatography Ultra Violet (HPLC-UV) to measure Delta8 THCV potency in oils, edibles, and extracts. LCUV is the preferred instrument for these products because it can test samples at room temperature without requiring heat. Heat breaks down cannabinoids into different forms and skews the potency information. 

Is Delta-8 THCV safe to consume?

Customers can determine Delta-8 THCV product safety by examining full panel lab test results. These tests examine the presence of residual solvents, pesticides, and microbials. 

  • Residual solvent assessment ensures the extraction process has not left harmful chemicals behind. 
  • Pesticide analysis reveals whether the product contains toxic substances used during cultivation. 
  • Microbial testing checks for bacteria, fungi, and other pathogens. 

Reputable brands conduct full panel tests and display the results for consumers to review via Certificates of Analysis on their website or product packaging.

Bottom Line

Delta 8 THCv isolate offers a stimulating, less-potent experience compared to other THC products. It has numerous potential health benefits, such as working as an appetite suppressant, regulating insulin and blood sugar, and reducing seizures. For those looking for a cannabinoid that promotes motivation and alertness, THCV could be a great option

Contact ACS Laboratory today to test Delta-8 THCV oils, isolates, distillates, edibles, and beverages. 

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