The synthetic CBD alternative is easier to purify than a plant extract, eliminates the need to use agricultural land for hemp cultivation, and could avoid legal complications with cannabis-related products.
“It’s a much safer drug than CBD, with no abuse potential and doesn’t require the cultivation of hemp,” says Mark Mascal, professor in the chemistry department at the University of California, Davis.
“UNLIKE CBD, THERE IS NO WAY TO CONVERT H2CBD TO INTOXICATING THC.”
Products containing CBD have recently become popular for their supposed health effects and because the compound does not cause a high. CBD is also being investigated as a pharmaceutical compound for conditions including anxiety, epilepsy, glaucoma, and arthritis.
But because it comes from extracts of cannabis or hemp plants, CBD poses legal problems in some states and under federal law. It is also possible to chemically convert CBD to tetrahydrocannabinol