By Philippe Henry

The classification of Cannabis varieties has been increasingly discussed in the past years, particularly within the scope of intellectual property development and protection Henry 2016. Several publications have developed molecular markers useful to classify these two groups e.g. Henry 2015, and the USPTO has begun assessing patent applications, such as that for 100 or more SNPs shown to tease apart hemp from marijuana based on opportunistically collected data Sawler & Myles, 2016.

More recently, the release of the complete Cannabis chromosome assembly into ten chromosomes (previous public version contained 135'164 scaffolds), brings much needed insight into the inheritance and adaptive introgression of CBDA expression in drug-type cannabis Grassa et al. 2018.

Based on data from 192 samples, we here propose the use of a set of two Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms (SNPs) found in two disparate regions of the cannabis genome; the mitochondria and the THCA synthase gene (Table 1). In conjunction these two molecular markers provide a rapid and cost-effective means to identify hemp derived (low) CBDA producing accessions from drug-type (high) CBDA and THCA expressing varieties.

Table 1.

Type Mito_318'683 THCAS_8'374
Fibre/Hemp A/A A/A
THCA/Drug C/C G/G or G/A

Journal of Brief Ideas references


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Philippe Henry



Published: 6 Nov, 2018

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