Every cannabis user is familiar with tetrahydrocannabinol, better known as THC. This cannabinoid is the main cause of the high you experience when the molecule binds to the CB1 receptors in the central nervous system. The effects range from euphoria and craving to drowsiness and relaxation. Cannabis breeders and extract makers have long sought to obtain high levels of this psychotropic substance. They do this through selective breeding and advanced isolation techniques. There are now even THC crystals with a purity of up to 99%. Specific cannabis plants have also been developed with over 30% THC in the buds. THC is indeed the main psychotropic compound in cannabis, but it exists in many forms. THCA (tetrahydrocannabinolic acid), for example, is a non-psychotropic cannabinoid acid. The trichomes produce this substance, which additionally shows medicinal potency. Heating, or decarboxylation, changes this molecule to THC. THCV (tetrahydrocannabivarin) is another cannabinoid. Its molecular structure is also similar to THC and its psychotropic effect is two-phase. Low doses may block the receptors that THC binds to; high doses seem to activate them. And then there is THC-O-acetate. This chemical compound is also similar to THC. Reportedly, however, the effects elicited are as much as 200-300% more potent. Cannabis buds synthesize the above cannabinoids through enzymatic reactions, but THC-O-acetate is a man-made chemical created in a laboratory. Let’s discover more about this intriguing molecule.
WHAT IS THC-O-ACETATE?
THC-O-acetate is known as the acetate ester of THC. In doing so, its synthesis is possible from both THC and THCA. This process requires corrosive and dangerous chemicals, such as sulfuric acid and acetic anhydride. So do not try to make this molecule yourself at home, as it is unwise and potentially deadly. Leave this to qualified chemists with skills on the level of Walter White. Once synthesized, THC-O-acetate is actually biologically inactive. This places the molecule in the prodrug category; substances that are only active after being broken down by physical, metabolic processes. A great example of a prodrug is psilocybin. The body converts it into psilocin.
BACKGROUND: GETTING TO KNOW THIS CANNABINOID
THC-O-acetate has an interesting and controversial history. This molecule is rare and unknown, even within the cannabis community. Thus, there is still much to discover. The limited scientific research on THC-O-acetate was conducted by the U.S. military between 1948 and 1975. This research was led by the US Army Chemical Corps. It involved classified studies with human subjects at the Edgewood Arsenal military complex in Maryland. The participants: over 7000 soldiers and 1000 civilians. These people were exposed to a low dose of various chemicals to investigate their effects for warfare. Part of this program had to do with psychochemical warfare. Substances such as LSD, PCP, and cannabinoids, including THC-O-acetate, were administered to dogs in the process. It was concluded that the effects of this mysterious molecule were stronger than THC. Outside of these clandestine experiments, THC-O-acetate has received little attention in the mainstream community; including within the drug and cannabis culture. The discovery of extracts by the US DEA (Drug Enforcement Agency) in Florida brought the molecule to the attention of authorities in the country. However, due to the lack of violations surrounding the substance, it was never classified. Still, it is technically illegal, as an analogue of THC. The cannabinoid has also appeared in other Western countries, including the United Kingdom and New Zealand. In the UK, THC-O-acetate is a Class A drug, along with heroin and crack. Reportedly, this is so because of the conviction of a manufacturer. He used the book Cannabis Alchemy as a guide to this dangerous, chemical process.
THE EFFECTS OF THC-O-ACETATE
Think back to the high of the strongest weed you’ve ever used. Maybe it was a great concentrate, used with a dab rig. Or maybe it was a moon rock, added to your blunt. Either way, multiply this high by 300%. Reportedly, this is the effect of THC-O-acetate. The purified extract is said to look like a thick, brown oil. After consumption, metabolic processes make it biologically active by deacetylating the molecule. Within half an hour, a psychedelic and seemingly spiritual experience sets in. Some cannabis users like to keep things mild and have zero interest in this substance. Others are true psychonauts, constantly looking for new, inventive methods of using cannabinoids and experiencing a surprising high. Do you belong to the latter group? Then it is absolutely not wise to make this chemical at home. And you probably won’t encounter it much either. Your best option is to smoke cannabis that has been selectively engineered for a massive THC percentage.
RATHER SMOKE THESE BEASTLY STRONG STRAINS
The strains listed below indulge users with a powerful, long-lasting high. The buds of these specimens sometimes contain as much as 25% THC.
Gorilla is a monstrously strong strain. She is descended from Chocolate Diesel, Chem Sister and Sour Dubb. It’s clear that she hits seriously hard when you see the powdery layer of THC-rich trichomes on her leaves and buds. This indica-dominant strain contains 25% THC. With that, the high comes on quickly and works the body against the couch, while stimulating the mind with creative and philosophical thoughts. Gorilla’s tantalizing terpene profile offers flavors and scents of diesel, earth and acidity. Growing Gorilla absolutely pays off. In doing so, she prefers the outdoors, where she grows up to 300cm tall and produces beastly yields of 1000g/plant.
SUPER LEMON HAZE
Super Lemon Haze is also an absolute powerhouse in the cannabis world. This sativa-dominant lady was created from a breeding project with Lemon Skunk and Super Silver Haze. Smoking the dense, resinous buds arouses a cerebral, stimulating high. This makes her ideal for daytime use. Lose yourself in creative projects and tasks that require prolonged concentration. That is, if you can handle a THC percentage of 25%! The intense high is accompanied by scents and tastes of lemon, pepper and spices. Super Lemon Haze is a productive strain that performs well both indoors and outdoors. Indoor plants reach an average height. The yield thereby rises to 700g/m² in a flowering period of 9-10 weeks. Outdoor plants also grow to an average size. However, the yield is huge; around 1000-1200g/plant. This loot can be taken indoors in October.
Wedding Cake was developed especially for recreational psychonauts chasing a powerful high. However, she is also suitable for medicinal users who require large amounts of THC to relieve their symptoms. By crossing Girl Scout Cookies and Cherry Pie, a THC percentage of up to 25% was created. Thanks to this wonderful combination, users enjoy an immediate stone. This plant is ideal for use in the evenings, after which you drift off into blissful relaxation and a deep sleep. The yields of Wedding Cake, like its THC percentage, are enormous. Indoor plants will spoil you with up to 600g/m², after a flowering period of 56-63 days. Outdoor plants yield 800g/plant.