When we attend markets and events we have the opportunity to explain face to face how Beta Caryophyllene (BCP) works. One of the advantages of BCP that we talk about, is it’s ability to bind DIRECTLY to the CB2 receptors in our endocannabinoid system (ECS). On the weekend, we had one lady ask, what does that exactly mean? So, I thought I’d expand a little further in today’s blog. I’ll try to keep it in simple terms as much as possible!
Firstly, let’s recap what is the ECS? Our bodies and brains are densely packed with cellular receptors and a large network of chemical signals that make up the ECS. Cannabinoid Receptors act like traffic cops to control the levels and activity of most of the other neurotransmitters. They are responsible for turning up or down (bringing into balance) the other systems in our bodies that are out of balance (ie. not functioning optimally).
Receptors are simply protein molecules found on the surface of a cell. They receive signals or chemical information from outside the cell, through such things as molecules (eg hormones, neurotransmitters, and medications). The BCP molecule is known as Ligands. Ligands bind to the receptors on a cell and cause a response from that cell, and sometimes other cells as well. Visual help here – ligands (eg BCP) are keys that fit inside the lock (the receptor).
How does it work? Naturally speaking, to stimulate these receptors, our bodies produce molecules called endocannabinoids. BCP is very similar in structure and hence has the ability to bind directly to the BC2 receptor.
Basically, when we talk about direct and indirect binding of CB2 receptors we are referring to the different ways that molecules can interact with the receptor. Direct binding occurs when a molecule binds to the CB2 receptor at a specific site on its surface, triggering a conformational change in the receptor and activating downstream signaling pathways.
On the other hand, indirect binding occurs when a molecule interacts with other molecules in the ECS, such as enzymes that break down endocannabinoids, leading to changes in the levels of endocannabinoids and activation of the CB2 receptor. The advantage of direct binding is that it can produce a more targeted effect than indirect binding. Because direct binding occurs at a specific site on the receptor, it can activate a more specific signaling pathway and produce more selective effects in the body. Indirect binding, on the other hand, is more complex and can involve multiple steps in the ECS. This can lead to more generalized effects in the body.
In conclusion: direct binding can produce more targeted effects, while indirect binding can produce more generalized effects. This is what makes BCP such a great supplement!!
Have a wonderful week.
Sources: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6035094; https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5075023; https://www.nature.com/articles/s41467-023-37112-9; https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/the-endocannabinoid-system-essential-and-mysterious-202108112569
Disclaimer: The information in this post is for reference purposes only and not intended to constitute or replace professional medical advice or personal research. Please consult a qualified medical professional before making any changes to your diet, medications or lifestyle. Effects are provided as a guide only. Statements have not been evaluated by the TGA.