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Scientists Map Marijuana's Genetic Code; Good or Bad Thing?


By "Radical" Russ Belville

(CBS News)  A small Massachusetts-based company says it has successfully sequenced a marijuana plant, paving the way for more research into the therapeutic effects of Cannabis – including its potential for treating cancer and inflammatory diseases.

Medicinal Genomics published the raw sequence strings at midnight. The company’s findings have not yet undergone peer review. Medicinal Genomics put the data up on’s EC2 cloud- computing system.The more than 131 billion bases of sequence, which is believed to constitute the largest known gene collection of the Cannabis genomes so far, will be made available to the scientific public sometime this fall.

The breakthrough also raises the possibility that researchers will eventually be able to weed out – no pun intended – the psychoactive effects pot smoking has on people while enhancing the medicinal aspects of Cannabis.

No pun intended?  You mean copywriters at CBS don’t have a thesaurus?  The sentence could have been “…be able to isolate and remove…” but you chose “…weed out…”.

This is that pharmaceuticalization of cannabis we’ve been warning you about.  While it is desirable in some medical cases to remove the psychoactive effect of THC – some people do react badly to it – it is something that should remain a choice, not a requirement of cannabis medicine.  That mild euphoria can be as medicinal for the mental health of people battling disabling conditions and the cannabinoids are for their physical health.

What will be nice about this is finally getting the truth out about different cannabis strains.  Right now I can swab my dog’s cheek and through DNA testing determine his exact breed.  Won’t it be great in the future when you can get a pack of seeds or a clone plant and send in a sample for exact strain testing?  ”My guy said this was a ‘Jack Herer’, but it turned out to be 60% ‘Jack Herer’ and 40% ‘White Widow’!”


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