What are the unknown unknowns?

Do the great chemists on this forum know finally what are the unknowns on D8 oil?
Everything that is between the total cannabinoids and the 100 % on an HPLC.

I saw someone sharing a graph about the identification of those compounds but I can’t find it.

I also saw others saying that nobody knows them and that they can be perfectly safe or carcinogens.

Whats the actual knowledge about this important subject?

Do we know what unknowns are or it still an unknown subject?

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In all seriousness, I’d recommend sending samples to a smattering of different labs, but asking how many cannabinoids they can test for.

Maybe we could get some better references that way? But I even find many labs just kinda guess to whatevers closest anyhow.


I would love to find that graphic I saw in somewhere, those compounds didn’t look as nasty stuff but as strange molecules formations related to cannabinoids…

If you dont know what it is, and you give it to someone else to consume, thats a paddlin’


Nobody has been able to fully ID the 6+ unknowns. But the best guesses are exo-THCs and/or iso-THCs. But even if someone IDs them as those particulars, we still dont know what they do in the brainpan.

Regarding identifying everything up to 100%… that is not really necessary. We dont ID the remaining 40-50% in normal D9 oils. We should identify any unkown peaks that absorb on UV not seen in normal flower though.

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Absolutely sir, that’s because I would like to learn.

(of course I am talking after totally clearing solvent and catalyst before SPD)

When someone send it to analyze to a not very specific lab they receive a HPLC graph with cbd thc d8 cbda etc etc
Then you have a margin between all those typical cannabinoid and the 100 %…

And this is called unknowns right?

Its all I am asking, when you clarify that to me (I don’t sell anything ) you shut clarify that as well to the big majority of people on the business…

I think I am been clear enough and after all I apologize for my big ignorance.

We’ve ID’d a lot of things but they never add up to 100%

One of the biggest issues I’ve had is testing the cbd isolate at 88-93%.

We might need to look into some kind of calibration but I don’t know what

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Does anyone have any literature on these iso/exo compounds and their pharmacology? Specifically interested in the propyl variants (8-iso-thcv, 4(8)-iso-thcv and 4-iso-thcv).


When we first started mfg d8 we sent off samples to kcalabs and they sent me an email saying there were no detected cresols, dioxins, pthalates… I was under the impression those were the unknowns typically found in poor quality conversions.

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My latest discussion with KCA suggested that every one of the D9 conversions they’ve seen have coeluting compounds that are only separable using MRM. They suspect them to be these iso compounds, and I have no idea what the impact of them is. Generally this industry likes to correlate cannabinoid=safe but I’m looking for data to support that. We’re also going to try some normal phase prep column to try to remove/isolate them


Please let us know the outcome of that study.

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Will do. If anyone has any suggestions on the prep method, that would be appreciated as well. It’s quite clear than RP is not going to separate these compounds as they coelute on every known HPLC method. We’re throwing darts at a board running NP

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There’s very little known. We’re just now getting standards for them. They’re in every D8 batch we test, though, except maybe a few exceptions where one is ND, but the other isn’t.

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There are supposedly around 80 phytocannabinoids with only a few getting most of the recognition and study. Most cannabis is bred for D9 or CBD content, but there could be trace cannabinoids that haven’t been identified yet and thus harder to test for. Or substances introduced in the process of testing… Anyone remember “polywater”?


There was some talk of using chiral amylose based columns but it never went anywhere. Might not be viable for prep but could be OK for analysis.

And about the unknowns… Yes at least 3x unknown peaks on c18 hplc in all conversions. There was a paper that them by IDed by nmr I believe posted by pdxcanna. And one was a total new cannabinoid they got to name themselves. Obviously no neurotoxicology data on any of these, unless you count the people injesting them for the last 3 years.

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You need to look into Chiral column chromatography it is the future :ok_hand: