Colorado, USA-based Sunrise Genetics, Inc., has unveiled the first complete assembly of the cannabis genome – an advancement that can lead to high-tech breeding for industrial hemp to develop advanced raw materials for such things as health and medicinal products, food, clothing, insulation and hempcrete for construction.
CJ Schwartz, CEO of the Fort Collins, Colorado-based company behind the project, presented it at the 26th Annual Plant and Animal Genome Conference in the USA earlier this month. The breakthrough also will give some clarity to past claims about the cannabis plant, according to Schwartz.
Clearing the ‘b.s.’
“It really is a way to just sort of clear a lot of the b.s.,” Schwartz told Bloomberg. “The excessive claims are really doing a disservice to the plant or the potential of the plant and the science surrounding that.” The advancement with cannabis tracks those made long ago by big agro firms with other crops such as corn, wheat and tobacco.
The genome map will make it easier to test for strain stability and speed up breeding, the developers say.
Partners in Colorado
Sunrise partnered on the project with Functional Remedies, Boulder, Colorado, which provided plants from its breeding program as well as data critical to the fine tuning of the genome map. Functional Remedies also helped finance the project and develop plant intellectual property protection.
Having had a long-term relationship with Sunrise allowed Functional Remedies to develop its breeding program and improve its plants, said Tim Gordon, the company’s President. “We couldn’t be more excited that the results of our breeding efforts have contributed to mapping the first complete cannabis genome,” he said of the partnership.