What Is the Cannabinoid THCP?

Published August 09, 2021
What Is the Cannabinoid THCP? - Secret Nature

The cannabis plant remains full of surprises. In late 2019, Italian researchers discovered THCP, a new, natural form of THC that apparently is more than 30 times as potent.

Starting in 2021, products advertised as containing THCP have suddenly become available on the internet, but scientists are still scrambling to understand this ultra-strong new cannabis compound. Learn what THCP is, how it's different from other cannabinoids, and when you can expect THCP products to be safe for human consumption.

What is THCP?

Delta-9 tetrahydrocannabiphorol (THCP) is a newly discovered form of THC that may offer as much as 30 times the potency of conventional forms. All at once the darling of the “legal” THC market, THCP remains the subject of intensive research interest both at home and abroad.

It all started with a single paper. In 2019, the following study was published in the journal Scientific Reports:

A novel phytocannabinoid isolated from Cannabis sativa L. with an in vivo cannabimimetic activity higher than Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol: Δ9-Tetrahydrocannabiphorol

Within, Italian researchers relate their efforts to identify new cannabinoids in existing species of Cannabis sativa, resulting in the discovery of THCP and CBDP. It’s now believed that the previously unexplained increased potency of certain cannabis strains might be due to the presence of tiny concentrations of these “phorol” cannabinoids.

THCP overview

  • Newly discovered natural cannabinoid
  • Only present in tiny concentrations, but up to 30x more powerful
  • Currently a very sketchy market
  • Fully activates the cannabinoid receptors
  • There’s a CBD version: CBDP
  • Most likely a major target of Big Pharma in the future

How is THCP different?

In attempting to understand how THCP compares to conventional forms of THC, researchers used the synthetic cannabinoid receptor agonist CP55940 for comparison. This man-made research drug fully activates your brain’s CB1 receptors while delta 9 THC doesn’t offer anywhere near total activation.

According to the Italian researchers who wrote this study, though, THCP is comparable to synthetic cannabinoid agonists in its ability to fully activate the CB1 receptors. Essentially, THCP appears to give you a massively “fuller” high than THC without unnaturally overriding your brain’s circuitry.

Is THCP synthetic?

No, THCP is naturally found in cannabis, so it’s not inherently synthetic. It must be synthesized to be useful, though, since it’s only naturally available in such small concentrations. This makes THCP unlike THCO, the other “super” form of THC that recently became popular, which can only be synthesized since it’s not naturally available in cannabis at all.

That’s a good thing and a bad thing. On the one hand, THCP has been slow to enter the online market, preventing a sudden flood of ultra-strong THC. On the other, access to legitimate THCP or CBDP remains limited, which is a shame for natural substances with such great potential to revolutionize the cannabinoid industry.

What is THCP used for?

Right now, THCP isn’t used for much of anything. This super-strong cannabinoid is hard to find naturally in cannabis, and researchers still haven’t quite figured out what THCP even is yet.

In the future, THCP, CBDP, and even additional, still-theoretical “phorol” cannabinoids like CBGP and CBCP could monumentally affect the global hemp industry. The pharmaceutical industry can’t wait to get its hands on a repeatable, maximum-strength form of THC, and few phrases sound more enticing to Big Pharma than “full neuroreceptor activation.”

“Phorol” cannabinoids may be used for every current application of THC and CBD at some point. Whatever may come, THCP and CBDP are already amazing cannabinoids that activate your neuroreceptors more efficiently than conventional forms. Isolated THCP and CBDP will probably be more common at first as tomorrow’s cannabis breeders struggle to keep up.

Is THCP legal?

THCP is not specifically named in the Controlled Substances Act’s definition of “marijuana,” so it is not a Schedule I illegal drug. Generally, cannabinoids found in Cannabis sativa other than delta 9 THC are considered to be industrial hemp, which is fully legal.

The situation gets complicated when it comes to modified or synthesized cannabinoids, though. For cannabinoids like THCP and delta 8, which technically can be naturally derived from hemp, things are slightly different than they are for substances like Marinol or THCO, which are fully synthetic THC derivatives.

At some point in the future, synthetic THCP might be common in prescription drugs while natural forms of this compound become increasingly popular in hemp flower and vape concentrates. All we can ask is that sane, compassionate legislation govern the distribution and use of this potent and highly promising cannabinoid.

Can I buy THCP online?

Just a few months ago, the answer to this question was “No.” Now, though, a variety of manufacturers have started offering products advertised as containing THCP.

Incorrect data and outlandish claims are common on THCP product pages, so everything might not entirely be on the level. As a cannabinoid that was just discovered two years ago, THCP products being safe for human consumption already is too good to be true.

Is THCP safe?

We still don’t know enough about THCP to determine whether this substance is safe when used in an isolated or synthesized form. When naturally present in cannabis flower, THCP certainly seems safe enough, but the only THCP products currently available (assuming they’re genuine) contain isolated forms.

If our society still hasn’t learned its lesson about unregulated, ultra-strong versions of existing drugs suddenly entering the consumer market, we’re not sure what it’ll take to make it sink in. THCP and CBDP may end up proving immensely useful as therapeutic tools, but right now, they’re just more pawns for capitalizing on the enduringly illegal status of delta 9 THC.

Where to buy THCO for sale

We do not recommend any products currently listed as containing THCP. It is unclear whether these products are genuine, and even if they are, THCP and CBDP are wildly untested substances offering massively increased potency over their conventional counterparts.

There may come a point that we deem THCP safe and beneficial at Secret Nature. It's our belief that natural forms of cannabinoids should at least be an option, and however they’re derived, every single molecule of THCP currently on the market is guaranteed to be synthetic.

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