Many know cannabis to be associated with Delta 9 THC, well, since legalization. Because for many, prior to that, they had no idea what delta’s were and their association with cannabis. Recently, Delta 8 THC has gained popularity, both good and bad. Many love it, many don’t, and the don’ts usually come from the fact that Delta 8 is a synthetic compound— more on that below.
However, In recent industry news, Delta 10 is gaining popularity, a delta that can be extracted from hemp, just like delta 8. There are differences in these delta’s, so let’s get into them. But first…
What Are Cannabis Delta’s and Where Do They Come From
Delta’s are defined as wetlands that form as rivers empty their water and sediment into another body of water, such as an ocean, lake, or another river; however, this isn’t what it means for cannabis. In cannabis, delta’s are compounds, chemical structures that bind to carbons, and the endocannabinoid system. Most delta’s (unlike delta 9) are found in trace amounts in cannabis and hemp plants.
Let’s use delta 8 as an example. In hemp, delta 8 is extracted from CBD isolate. CBD isolate is CBD extracted from the hemp plant and isolated from the other cannabinoids. Let me break this down more; in the initial extraction, all of the cannabinoids, including trace amounts of THC are removed from the plant. To obtain CBD only, which is isolated (because the CBD is isolated from the other cannabinoids), another extraction takes place. When the CBD is officially isolated from the other cannabinoids, is when it is synthesized into delta 8. So, these delta’s go through processing in order to exist for consumption.
Delta 10- The New Delta on The Block
Not as popular as Delta 8 and Delta 9 (yet), Delta 10 THC, “delta-10 -tetrahydrocannabinol”, is a minor cannabinoid that can be extracted from hemp and CBD. Delta 10 THC is known to be less potent than Delta 8 and Delta 9.
Because this delta is newer to the scene, there isn’t a lot of information on it; however, ACS Laboratory, Cannabis, Hemp, and CBD Testing, says this about Delta 10 THC:
“While very little research has been done on its mechanism of action in the body, Delta-10 THC likely interacts with the endocannabinoid system in a similar way as other THC compounds. Delta-9 THC and Delta-8 THC have binding affinities towards CB1 receptors in the brain and nervous system, which produce varying levels of psychotropic effects. Delta-10 may interact similarly with CB1 receptors at high concentrations.”
Differences Between Delta 9 and Delta 10
Delta’s 9 and 10 are both THC, extracted from both cannabis hemp and/or cannabis marijuana. Because they are THC, they create some level of psychoactivity. Delta 9 is the THC that most consumers are familiar with. It’s the main delta, the most potent one, no processing needed, no need to synthesize. Delta 9 has been getting people high for decades.
“A cannabinoid found in trace amounts in the cannabis plant. Like regular THC, delta-10 can get you high, but it is less potent than delta-9.”
As for where delta 10 comes from, ACS Laboratory explains:
“Delta-10 THC is one of the hundreds of cannabinoids you can find in hemp and cannabis. Unlike Delta-9 however, Delta-10 appears in such trace amounts that you’d waste an exhaustive amount of time and plant material trying to extract it from natural strains. In fact, Delta-10 is so elusive that laboratories often misidentify the compound for CBC or CBL using standard High Performance Liquid Chromatography methods.”
Area 52 describes the key differences between delta 9 and delta 10 as:
“Delta 9 and delta 10 THC are isomers of one another, meaning they have the same chemical formula but a slightly different structure. Specifically, the location of a carbon double-bond in delta 10 THC occurs in a different place, on the tenth bond in the carbon chain rather than the ninth.”
Final Words- Delta 10 Legality
The legality with the various cannabis delta’s is a little grey. For example, in Las Vegas, hemp and cannabis are legal, but Delta 8 is not. Hemp is federally legal, and because delta 10 is derived from hemp, just like delta 8, the assumption is that it’s automatically legal. But keep in mind that states still have strict laws surrounding hemp, and so, the best thing to do is to research delta 10 legality in your state to determine if delta 10 is legal for consumption where one resides.
Veronica Castillo is known as the Traveling Cannabis Writer. Her body of work includes educational and informative insights on cannabis and various plant medicines, and she travels the country to provide insight on cannabis friendly travel. She is a collaborator, connector, content creator, and traveler that specialized in bringing to light the hidden gems in the plant space. Follow her journey: #travelingcannabiswriter.