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What is CBN (Cannabinol) and its Medical Benefits.

What is CBN (Cannabinol) and its Medical Benefits.


The two most popular chemical compounds of cannabis are CBD and THC. There is new research coming out that various other chemical compounds extracted from cannabis can have unique medical and therapeutic effects. Let’s dive into CBN and how it can have medical applications.

Note: The information given on this page is not medical advice and should be taken in conjunction with medical professional advice. Individuals wanting medical advice on this issue should consult their local healthcare professionals.

What Is Cannabinol (CBN)?

CBN or Cannabinol like many cannabinoids, is known as a “Phytocannabinoid”. Produced naturally by the cannabis plants, with a similar structure to that of THC. Phytocannabinoids interact with the bodies natural Endocannabinoid System (ECS). The Endocannabinoid System is neural system found in the body believed to be involved with returning the human body to a balanced state. Processes, such as fertility, appetite, mood, pain, and memory formation can all be altered by this system (Read More). Therefore the cascading effect after a cannabinoid binds

The Potential Medical benefits of CBN

Most of the medical benefits of CBN are in its immune-related effects, sedative/sleep aid qualities and pain relief properties. Research on autoimmune disorders such as Chron’s disease and Ruminator Arthritis are looking positive for CBN. here is a list of all the known medical effects of CBN.

Conditions for which CBN is particularly effective in providing symptom relief:

  • Anticonvulsive properties. (Read More)

  • Appetite stimulant. (Read More)

  • Anti-Inflammatory properties in Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) & Multiple Sclerosis (MS). (Read More)

  • CBN has antibiotic properties, including against “Golden Staph”. (Read More)

  • Pain relief through endorphin release. (Read More)

  • When combined with THC, CBN can help lower eye blood pressure. (Read More).

  • High Dosage of CBN are powerful sedative, and even more so when combined with THC and/or CBD. (Read More)

  • Higher levels of CBN may provide a particularly effective option for battling insomnia. (Read More)

  • Peripheral analgesic of myofascial pain. (Read More)

CBN Effect on the Nervous System

Activation of cannabinoid receptors:

  • (CB1) mediates psychoactive effects
  • (CB2) regulates various immune responses
  • nTRPA1 channels (Neurogenic inflammation)
  • Partial Agonist to CB1 & CB2

CBN acts on cannabinoid receptors 1 and 2 (CB1 & CB2). As a partial agonist, the CBN molecule does not fit ‘perfectly’ (rather partially) into the CB1 or CB2 receptor. In contrast, Anandamide an agonist that causes the ‘Runners High’ is a full agonist meaning the molecules fit like a key to a lock. Being an agonist to the CB1 Receptor means that CBN causes a ‘mild’ psychoactive effects (Similar to THC). However, unlike THC, CBN has a higher affinity for the CB2 receptor compared to the CB1, making the psychoactive effects a lot milder. Because of this high affinity for the CB2 receptor, CBN interacts largely with the immune system. However, CBN does still interact with the CB1 receptor, causing both pain suppression and appetite stimulation.

The CBN molecule may also aid in therapeutic application in diseases such as obesity. In a disease like obesity, CB1 cannabinoid receptors are up-regulated. the CB1 receptor has been shown to cause weight loss and other health benefits (Read More). Micodosages of CBN could lead to a down-regulation of receptors in both CB1 & CB2 as a result of supplemental tolerance.

Where Does CBN come from?

Cannabinol or CBN is mainly found in the aged Trichomes of The Cannabis Flower.(Read More). The THC molecules in the Trichomes Breakdown into CBN, largely due to exposure to heat, light and time. Therefore as CBN content increases, THC content will decrease in aging flower bud.

Note Figure 1. Shows Cannabigerolic Acid (CBGA) is the main precursor of the cannabinoids CBN & CBD.

When Was CBN Found?

In 1896 Wood and colleagues in Cambridge Isolated the first CBN cannabinoid, at the time this represented the first natural cannabinoid to be obtained in pure form.

King and colleagues in 1940, correctly determined the structure of CBN, and incorrectly assumed it to be the active psychotropic ingredient of Cannabis. This confusion was largely due to the CBN, being derived from the ageing of the THC molecule when exposed to light, heat and time.

  • Yes : For prescription use only or trace amounts in skin/food products.

The Narcotic Drugs Amendment Act of 2016 came into effect and allowing some states to have general practitioners and/or specialist to prescribe medicinal marijuana to patients. However, nation wide exception to this rule is the requirement for special approval for children under 16 and patients with a history of drug abuse.

Where can you get medical cannabis treatment by state:

Cannabis Treatment by Australian State

Can I Get CBN in Australia?

To date, in Australia you can not get CBN in its pure form. however, it can be purchased in oils along side other Phytocannabinoids such as (mainly, THC, CBD).

Note * There is no safe level of drug use. Use of any drug always carries some risk—even medications can produce unwanted side effects. It is important to be careful when taking any type of drug*

Does Medicare Cover Cannabis Products?

Quick Answer: Yes, cannabis oils and Medicare Rebates are available.

The average patient pays between $4-10 per day for their medicinal cannabis product.

Medicare Rebates are available for InClinic appointments; please refer to your local clinic for details.

CDA - Cannabis Doctors Australia

The cannabis doctors Australia CDA offers both affordable medicinal cannabis and also treatment plans for specific health needs. The CDA does not take payment for products. The CDA doctor prescribes legal medical cannabis products on the market. The doctor will work with the patient in the consultation room. The CDA will then help find the most suitable strain and dosage schedule for their clients needs. All their products grown from natural cannabis in pharmaceutical grade (GMP) sites. Doctors of CDA work with their patients to make help with an applications to the Department of Health.

  • Initial consultation - $200
  • Follow-up appointment -$65
  • Additional application are $35 per product.

Do Healthcare Funds Support Cannabis Products?

Yes - A patients healthcare funds can support a portion of the consultations and hemp/cannabis product. The level of cover is a contributing factor.


Disclaimer: Cannabis Place may contain information regarding cannabis & other drugs; it is designed for 18+ audiences in regions where cannabis has been decriminalised. This topic may represent illegal activity in certain regions. We do not encourage illegal activity. We understand that readers in locations where cannabis has been legalised may read these articles. Medical Cannabis in Australia is regulated by the Therapeutic Goods Administration and details about Cannabis as a scheduled drug can be found on their website. Please consult with your doctor to find out if Cannabis is right for you. Click here for our full disclaimer