Researchers Identify Genes that Give Marijuana its Flavor

University of British Columbia (UBC) scientists have scanned the genome of cannabis plants to find the genes responsible for giving various strains their lemony, skunky or earthy flavors, a finding that researchers call “an important step for the budding legal cannabis industry”.

“The goal is to develop well-defined and highly-reproducible cannabis varieties”, said Jörg Bohlmann, a professor at UBC, in a press release sent today. ” This is similar to the wine industry, which depends on defined varieties such as chardonnay or merlot for high value products.” Bohlmann says that their genomics work “can inform breeders of commercial varieties which genes to pay attention to for specific flavour qualities.”

The research is part of an ongoing collaboration between Bohlmann, graduate student Judith Booth, and Jonathan Page, an adjunct professor in the botany department who founded the cannabis testing and biotechnology company Anandia Labs.

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