February 23-25, 2023 | New York Hilton, NY

CBD vs CBDA: The Missing Clinical Benefits

Session Description:
The pharmacology and therapeutic benefits of cannabidiol (CBD) is currently being widely explored. CBD is the neutral cannabinoid that results from the decarboxylation process of the Cannabis plant. However, the natural occurring form present in the plant is cannabidiolic acid (CBDA). The pharmacology of CBDA has been relatively overlooked due to the belief that decarboxylation is necessary to make cannabinoids therapeutically active and that cannabidiolic acid is difficult to extract. Unfortunately, this is a narrow and limited understanding of cannabinoid pharmacology that persists through the Cannabis renaissance currently underway. In this presentation we will examine the pharmacology, clinical indications and safety of CBDA.


Learning Objectives:

At the conclusion of this event, attendees will be able to:

  1. state the effects of heat, light and air on cannabinoids
  2. understand the difference between neutral and acidic cannabinoids
  3. identify at least 3 pharmacological targets of CBDA
  4. recognize at least 3 clinical indications for CBDA
  5. discuss dosing of CBDA in clinical settings
  6. interpret the evidence-base on the safety of CBDA

Kevin Spelman, PhD, MCPP, is a molecular biologist, phytochemist and clinician who has worked with medicinal plants, in the field, in the clinic, in laboratory settings and human trials. He is a past National Institutes of Health postdoctoral fellow, where he studied cannabinoid signaling and was the first researcher to predict and demonstrate cannabinoid ligands in Zanthoxylum spp. He was also a Marie Curie research fellow in the European Union investigating the effects of medicinal plants on malaria. His clinical experience began in the late 1989 and progressed to a group practice of MDs, DOs, FNPs and PAs and stretched through thirty years, four states and two countries. Dr. Spelman has also advised the White House Commission on Complementary and Alternative Medicine (Clinton administration). His research history includes investigating brain and ovarian cancer, clinical investigations, immunological studies and chemical analysis on multiple plants. International research has included the analysis of nutrient levels in teenage women in West Africa, working with children with neurological disorders in Central America and researching medicinal plants active against malaria in Paris. Dr. Spelman has been an adjunct assistant professor at Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, an adjunct professor of botanical medicine at National University of Natural Medicine and a distinguished lecturer at Maryland University of Integrative Health. He has published 29 scientific papers and 6 chapters on medicinal plants. Dr. Spelman currently leads Health, Education & Research, a consulting service for the Natural Products and Cannabis Industry assisting natural products companies in research, scale up, formulations, product development and meeting regulatory requirements. As a formulator he has had 13 SKUs in the market both cannabinoid-based and non-cannabinoid-based and has products he co-formulated in use by 30 professional sports teams and the 3 branches of military special services.


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