CannaKeys: Unlocking The Science


To understand cannabinoids, you must know how they work in the endocannabinoid system. The classical endocannabinoid system (ECS) consists of endocannabinoids, their corresponding receptor sites, metabolizing enzymes, and endocannabinoid tone. Beyond these classical components, you’ll find the relatively new idea of the endocannabinoidome (eCBome), which describes the larger environment interacting with the ECS. The interaction between the ECS and eCBome is not a one-way street but a complex cross-talk-based mechanism that we can harness to improve patient outcomes.

To help you discern their differences and why they matter in the clinical setting, follow the links below to foundational information organized by cannabinoid types, cannabinoid receptors, endocannabinoid tone, and the endocannabinoidome. 


CBD Cannabidiol molecule

Phytocannabinoids are cannabinoids produced by plants. Over 150 individual cannabinoids have been found in cannabis; we include phytocannabinoids once research indicates they may induce a specific therapeutic effect on a patient population.


Anandamide AEA molecule showing endocannabinoid molecular structure.

Endocannabinoids are cannabinoids made by the human body.  We include endocannabinoids, endocannabinoid analogs, and their primary metabolizing enzymes once research indicates that they have potential clinical relevance.

Synthetic cannabinoids

Synthetic cannabinoid HU 211 Dexanabinol molecule.

Synthetic cannabinoids are manufactured but used primarily for research rather than patient populations.  Synthetic cannabinoids are included once research indicates they have potential relevance in the clinical setting.   

Pharmaceutical cannabinoids

Marinol or Pharmaceutical THC molecular structure

Pharmaceutical cannabinoids are cannabinoid-based drugs that are readily available by prescription.  We organize pharmaceutical cannabinoid research data by the ratio of THC to CBD or the cannabis chemotype to which they correspond.


Mediators of the Endocannabinoidome or eCBome diagram.

The endocannabinoidome includes cannabis constituents, food, nutraceuticals, mind-body approaches, the microbiome, the lipidome and certain psychotropics that interact with, or modulate, the endocannabinoid system.

Endocannabinoid receptor sites

Cannabinoid Receptor CB1 is a G-coupled protein receptor.

Endocannabinoid receptor site resource pages include CB1, CB2, GPR55 with a deeper dive into the expected effect associated with agonism or antagonism at that receptor and a list of agonists or antagonists with their receptor binding affinities.

Endocannabinoid tone

Endocannabinoid Tone is shown with up arrow and down arrow indicating excessive tone or deficient tone.

 Endocannabinoid tone and the medical conditions associated with deficient and excessive tone as well as practical steps to enhance or reduce e-tone.  

As trends in cannabinoid research indicate that new clinical approaches are warranted, we can help support your clinical practice and keep you up-to-date with the best resources and scientific data available.

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Check out our cannabinoid dashboard demo for THCV

Access at-a-glance research dashboard and studies for selected cannabinoid.

Find cannabinoids by searching name, properties or effects.

User Manual Icon for Cannakeys Search

User Guide

Comprehensive guide to Cannakeys endocannabinoid research searches.

Top 10 Cannabinoids by # of Clinical Studies

Only includes studies that are double-blind, placebo-controlled, clinical Clinical trials with proven therapeutic effects using the studied cannabinoid.

Disclaimers: Information on this site is provided for informational purposes only and is not meant to substitute for the advice provided by your own physician or other medical professional. You should not use the information contained herein for diagnosing a health problem or disease. If using a product, you should read carefully all product packaging. If you have or suspect that you have a medical problem, promptly contact your health care provider.

Information on this site is based on scientific studies (Clinical, animal, or in vitro), clinical experience, or traditional usage as cited in each article. The results reported may not necessarily occur in all individuals. For many of the conditions discussed, treatment with prescription or over-the-counter medication is also available. Consult your physician, nutritionally oriented health care practitioner, and/or pharmacist for any health problem and before using any supplements or before making any changes in prescribed medications.