CSCI Research Brief

The Effects of Cannabigerolic Acid (CBGA) & Other Cannabinoids on Seizures in Mice with Epilepsy

Cannabigerolic acid, a major biosynthetic precursor molecule in cannabis, exhibits divergent effects on seizures in mouse models of epilepsy. British Journal of Pharmacology. Published online August 12, 2021. doi:10.1111/bph.15661

Phytocannabinoids, such as Cannabidiol (CBD), have been used to treat certain types of epilepsy (i.e., Dravet syndrome, and Lennox-Gestaut syndrome) for some time. The use of cannabis to treat seizures began long before the FDA approved the drug called epidolex, made with CBD. 

Cannabis-based products used to treat these specific forms of epilepsy contain small dosages of CBD; they also have other types of phytocannabinoids. This prompted scientists to find out whether one phytocannabinoids, called cannabigerolic acid (CBGA), and other constituents of cannabis, could lend themselves to the antiseizure properties of cannabis-based therapies.

The Effects of Cannabigerolic Acid (CBGA) & Other Cannabinoids on Seizures in Mice with Epilepsy: Study Findings

This study employed mouse models to measure the effect of phytocannabinoids on hyperthermia and electroshock induced seizures. Researchers found cannabigerolic acid (CBGA) the most promising in its potential to treat spontaneous seizures in electroshock seizure mice models. 

The study authors identified three pytocannabinoids with anticonvulsant properties, including:

  1. Cannabigerolic acid CBGA
  2. Cannabidivarinic acid (CBDVA)
  3. Cannabigerovarinic acid (CBGVA)

Other findings from this 2021 study include:

  • CBGA exhibited the strongest anticonvulsant effect in the MES threshold test, compared to the other two phytocannabinoids.
  • CBGA provoked seizures in the 6-Hz threshold test in which a high dosage increased spontaneous seizures.
  • CBGA interacted with many epilepsy-relevant targets including GPR55, TRPV1 channels and GABAA receptors.


The study authors concluded, “These results suggest that CBGA, CBDVA and CBGVA may contribute to the effects of cannabis-based products in childhood epilepsy.” Link to article:

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