Easy and Accessible Synthesis of Cannabinoids from CBD

J Nat Prod. 2024 Mar 1. doi: 10.1021/acs.jnatprod.3c01117. Online ahead of print.


Cannabidiol (CBD), a prominent phytocannabinoid found in various Cannabis chemotypes, is under extensive investigation for its therapeutic potential. Moreover, because it is nonpsychoactive, it can also be utilized as a functional ingredient in foods and supplements in certain countries, depending on its legal status. From a chemical reactivity point of view, CBD can undergo conversion into different structurally related compounds both during storage and after the consumption of CBD-based products. The analytical determination of these compounds is of paramount concern due to potential toxicity and the risk of losing the active ingredient (CBD) title. Consequently, the complete stereoselective total synthesis of representative CBD-derived compounds has become a matter of great interest. The synthesis of pure CBD-derived compounds, achievable in a few synthetic steps, is essential for preparing analytical standards and facilitating biological studies. This paper details the transformation of the readily available CBD into Δ8-THC, Δ9-THC, Δ8-iso-THC, CBE, HCDN, CBDQ, Δ6-iso-CBD, and 1,8-cineol cannabinoid (CCB). The described protocols were executed without the extensive use of protecting groups, avoiding tedious purifications, and ensuring complete control over the structural features.