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March 1, 2024
4 min to read

Delta 6a10a (AKA Delta 3 THC): What We Know So Far

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Hayley Heidelbaugh

Delta 6a10a THC—also called delta 3 tetrahydrocannabinol (delta 3 THC)—is a THC isomer and newly emerging constituent of hemp-derived cannabis products.

It caught the hemp industry’s attention only after the delta 8 THC and delta 10 THC commercial thrill ride had slowed somewhat. Although non-isomeric cannabinoids like HHC are a focal point of the market, manufacturers haven’t given up on the “deltas.” Reliable information on delta 6a10a THC is sparse, however, and most of the available research is decades old.

The delta THC isomers are sense-altering substances that share a chemical formula (C21H30O2) and molecular weight (314.45 g/mol). Shifting the position of a double bond is all that’s needed to convert one molecule to the next. Despite the chemical similarity, though, the potency and effects of the various THCs can vary drastically.

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What is delta 6a10a THC?

First produced synthetically in the 1940s, researchers used delta 6a10a as a chemical pathway to delta 8 and delta 9 THC, which were then recently identified compounds. Chemists have since observed two delta 6a10a enantiomers: 9R delta 6a10a and 9S delta 6a10a.

HHC consumers may be experiencing déjà vu. Potential effects and potency differ depending on which mirror image of delta 6a10a we’re working with. Think of delta 6a10a’s 9R form as someone’s right hand and 9S as their left. One is “dominant” and can’t be superimposed onto the other unless mirrored.

Aside from key points related to structure and potency, little is known about delta 6a10a. Cannabis researchers grazed the surface with a handful of studies in the late 1970s and early 1980s. However, these papers mostly concentrated on the cannabinoid’s analogs and basic behavioral activity. No verdicts about recreational consumption were reached then, and still haven’t been.

Although delta 3 THC is a synonym for delta 6a10a THC, don’t confuse the delta 3 cannabinoid with the delta 3 carene terpene.

Does delta 6a10a THC get you high?

It appears that delta 6a10a has mild intoxicating effects.

Delta 9 THC, delta 8 THC, and other delta isomers have unique affinities for the CB2 cannabinoid receptor. The binding strength varies, but they all seem to interact with it to some extent. Activating this receptor cranks up dopamine production, catapulting you into the uplifting, euphoric headspace associated with getting high.

Marijuana-derived delta 9 binds strongly and is known to take users on a potent ride, while a delta 10 buzz is much milder. Delta 6a10a THC could be even milder than delta 10.

Chances are, a low dose of this newcomer isn’t going to do much for you. But maybe that’s exactly what you’re aiming for.

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What are the effects of delta 6a10a THC?

We lack a clear picture of how each delta 6a10a enantiomer impacts users, though there is a decent understanding of their potencies. The 9S variant behaves like a considerably less intense delta 9 THC. Delta 6a10a’s 9R conformation displays little to no activity, however.

In perhaps the most impressive research linked to it, synthetic delta 6a10a (under the name EA 1477) appeared to exhibit anticonvulsant and analgesic qualities in dogs. Now, the glaring caveat: this report was published in the 1950s, and it appears no one since has replicated the research or examined the possibilities further. Take it with a grain of salt.

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Will delta 6a10a THC show up on a drug test?

It’s highly probable that delta 6a10a consumption will result in a failed drug test. Until we have the full rundown of any cannabinoid’s metabolization, assume the worst.

Intoxicating cannabinoids generally convert into THC-COOH after they’re processed by the liver. Routine urinalysis and other less common drug screenings, including hair and saliva tests, all target this metabolite.

Is delta 6a10a legal and where is it sold?

Delta 6a10a THC is currently a legal hemp derivative under the 2018 Farm Bill.

Be that as it may, it’s unclear whether the cannabinoid has ever been naturally isolated or extracted. Other delta variants, namely delta 9 and delta 8 THC, have well-established natural origins. Whether this impacts delta 6a10a’s legality is yet to be seen.

Commercialization of delta 6a10a THC has just begun. As of early 2024, consumers will likely struggle to get their hands on it. Products are overwhelmingly scarce, but after some digging, we found some disposable vapes and distillates that purport to contain delta 6a10a.

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Hayley Heidelbaugh

Vaping since: 3 years

Favorite products:

Favorite flavors: White Wedding, Northern Lights, Platinum Valley, OG Kush

Expertise in: Oil carts, cannabis concentrates, cannabis flower

Hayley Heidelbaugh

I'm a Pennsylvania-based cannabis enthusiast and writer. As a part of the Vaping360 team, I'm eager to help cannabis consumers explore vaping and get the most out of their experience. You can also find me @faeberrystudios on Instagram.

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