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Spatial gradients in cannabis

Researchers have uncovered how cannabinoid profiles that vary within the same Cannabis plant can elicit organ-specific effects in the plant itself. This in-planta variability means stringent standardization is required before Cannabis can be implemented as a therapeutic crop for modern medicine.

Led by professor Bernstein, the researchers demonstrated that variability correlated with height, with cannabinoid concentrations peaking in the flowers and the inflorescence leaves. This difference in composition along the plant is termed the chemotype.

The team also examined the ionome – the partitioning of mineral nutrients between plant organs in attempts to discern how this affects cannabinoid metabolism. Like the chemotype, the ionome is affected by the plant locale and organ.

Since research on the cannabis plant has not advanced at a proper pace over the prohibition era, there is a lack of understanding of the relationship between the cannabis ionome and which is vital for the understanding of cannabis metabolism. 

This missing information is essential in future efforts to standardize cannabis for use as a pharmaceutical agent. This is an issue worsened by a gap in the knowledge of chemical and physiological variation within the plan. Bernstein’s work is therefore essential in transforming the future of therapeutic options.


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