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Hemp And Marijuana: Genes Producing THC, Active Ingredient In Cannabis Plant, Identified

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The Straight Story Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-16-09 03:48 PM
Original message
Hemp And Marijuana: Genes Producing THC, Active Ingredient In Cannabis Plant, Identified
Hemp And Marijuana: Genes Producing THC, Active Ingredient In Cannabis Plant, Identified

ScienceDaily (Sep. 15, 2009) In a first step toward engineering a drug-free Cannabis plant for hemp fiber and oil, University of Minnesota researchers have identified genes producing tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the psychoactive substance in marijuana. Studying the genes could also lead to new and better drugs for pain, nausea and other conditions.

The finding is published in the September issue of the Journal of Experimental Botany. Lead author is David Marks, a professor of plant biology in the College of Biological Sciences.

The study revealed that the genes are active in tiny hairs covering the flowers of Cannabis plants. In marijuana, the hairs accumulate high amounts of THC, whereas in hemp the hairs have little. Hemp and marijuana are difficult to distinguish apart from differences in THC.

With the genes identified, finding a way to silence themand thus produce a drug-free plant comes a step closer to reality. Another desirable step is to make drug-free plants visually recognizable. Since the hairs can be seen with a magnifying glass, this could be accomplished by engineering a hairless Cannabis plant.

The researchers are currently using the methods of the latest study to identify genes that lead to hair growth in hopes of silencing them.

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/09/0909151135...
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chelsea0011 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-16-09 03:51 PM
Response to Original message
1. Maybe they're looking for "drug-free" but look for their research to create
some potent weed.
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Jackpine Radical Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-16-09 03:52 PM
Response to Original message
2. How 'bout making those little genes SHOUT
instead of silencing them?
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slackmaster Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-16-09 03:52 PM
Response to Original message
3. Rather than a drug-free plant, wouldn't it make more sense to come up with a plant-free drug?
I know a botanist who has been talking for decades about growing just flowers in vitro.
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Betsy Ross Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-16-09 04:00 PM
Response to Original message
4. I have mixed feelings
On one hand, I want to see us grow and use hemp again. I think the knowledge gained from the research is important. But I'm not so hot on genetic engineering. We could just as easily change the law and allow current hemp strains to be grown. Cheaper, quicker, and we would be growing from well developed strains.
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Gman2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-16-09 04:02 PM
Response to Original message
5. Active Delta 9 THC, without other canabinoids, makes one paranoid
It makes the blood pressure raise, heart rate too. It is the balance, derived over thousands of years, all of that time selected for good effect, and the human body also aligning, that makes Cannabis therapeutic. Fuck this crap, marinol sucks too.
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HiFructosePronSyrup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-16-09 08:07 PM
Response to Reply #5
16. Again with the goofy science.
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Gman2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-16-09 10:46 PM
Response to Reply #16
19. Do you have a fucking clue what your dumbass is talking about?
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HiFructosePronSyrup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-16-09 11:00 PM
Response to Reply #19
21. Indeed.
And because I know what we're talking about, I know that you do not know what we are talking about.
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Gman2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-16-09 11:06 PM
Response to Reply #21
22. I am a patient, a grower, and have studied. You?
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HiFructosePronSyrup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-16-09 11:08 PM
Response to Reply #22
23. Is this when you're not studying Bonobo's?
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Gman2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-16-09 11:11 PM
Response to Reply #23
24. Are you REALLY this big an asshole? Bubbye!
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foo_bar Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-16-09 11:19 PM
Response to Reply #16
25. dunno about "aligning", but there are a number of active ingredients involved
Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), cannabidiol (CBD) and cannabinol (CBN) are the most prevalent natural cannabinoids and have received the most study. Other common cannabinoids are listed below:

* CBG Cannabigerol
* CBC Cannabichromene
* CBL Cannabicyclol
* CBV Cannabivarin
* THCV Tetrahydrocannabivarin
* CBDV Cannabidivarin
* CBCV Cannabichromevarin
* CBGV Cannabigerovarin
* CBGM Cannabigerol Monoethyl Ether

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cannabinoids

It bears structural similarity to the other natural cannabinoids, including tetrahydrocannabinol, tetrahydrocannabivarin, cannabidiol, and cannabinol, among others. Evidence has suggested that it may play a role in the anti-inflammatory effects of cannabis, and may contribute to the overall analgesic effects of medical cannabis. However, more research into the compound may be needed before any definite medical effects can be verified.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cannabichromene

Cannabidiol, also known as CBD, is a cannabinoid found in Cannabis. It is a major constituent of the plant, representing up to 40% in its extracts.<1>

CBD alone is not intoxicating, but displayed sedative effects in animal tests.<2> Some research, however, indicates that CBD can increase alertness.<3> It may decrease the rate of THC clearance from the body, perhaps by interfering with the metabolism of THC in the liver. CBD appears to affect both the CB1 and CB2 receptors- with higher affinity for the CB2 receptors .<4> Cannabis indica dominant strains of the plant are known to be higher in CBD than Cannabis sativa strains. <5>

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cannabidiol

In April 2005, Canadian authorities approved the marketing of Sativex, a mouth spray for multiple sclerosis patients, who can use it to alleviate neuropathic pain and spasticity. Sativex contains tetrahydrocannabinol together with cannabidiol. It is marketed in Canada by GW Pharmaceuticals, being the first cannabis-based prescription drug in the world (in modern times).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tetrahydrocannabinol
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Wizard777 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-16-09 08:21 PM
Response to Reply #5
18. It's a halucinogenic.
The only way I know how to explain it is in terms of alchemy. When you put the Halogenic into the Crucible. What comes out of the crucible depends entirely upon what you have placed in the crucible to feed the stone. :dilemma:

:dunce:
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Greyhound Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-16-09 04:04 PM
Response to Original message
6. It already exists, WTF would they waste the time to do this? n/t
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eShirl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-16-09 04:09 PM
Response to Reply #6
9. because they would have a patent on it, and pay to have unpatented ones outlawed. n/t
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Greyhound Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 12:16 AM
Response to Reply #9
28. Of course, how stupid of me. n/t
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TxRider Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-16-09 04:13 PM
Response to Reply #6
14. To be able to grow legal industrial hemp, with no THC
And get it past politicians easier.
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Greyhound Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 12:15 AM
Response to Reply #14
27. Industrial hemp has no high. You could smoke pounds of it and only fry your lungs. n/t
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Winterblues Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-16-09 04:07 PM
Response to Original message
7. Them red hairs is gravy man
Farm out....
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kenny blankenship Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-16-09 04:09 PM
Response to Original message
8. So now THC can be inserted into just about any plant - Drug War OVER
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berni_mccoy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-16-09 04:12 PM
Response to Reply #8
13. Crabgrass or Dandelions and it's definitely over.
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FarCenter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-16-09 08:04 PM
Response to Reply #8
15. Unfortunately, it looks like you need to implement a whole secondary metabolic pathway
Unless you can find another plant that has the final precursor to THC.

A related plant is the hop, used in flavoring beer.
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TxRider Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-16-09 04:09 PM
Response to Original message
10. Hmm so inject those genes into lets say Barley..
And many other plants, and you have a legal high... ;)
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Sebastian Doyle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-16-09 08:12 PM
Response to Reply #10
17. Hops should be even easier.
They're not that far off from cannabis sativa. It would be an interesting mutation. And far less harmful than anything that ever crawled out of a MonSatan laboratory.
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HiFructosePronSyrup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 12:16 AM
Response to Reply #17
29. So... you're OK with genetic engineering when it involves pot?
Hmmm.
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Sebastian Doyle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 02:43 AM
Response to Reply #29
30. Not if MonSatan had anything to do with it
I haven't smoked in years, but if I ever did again, the last thing I'd want is a bong full of Roundup.
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HiFructosePronSyrup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 01:07 PM
Response to Reply #30
31. So the problem isn't genetic engineering?
It's pesticides?
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bananas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-16-09 04:11 PM
Response to Original message
11. Maybe they can make THC reuptake inhibitors
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berni_mccoy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-16-09 04:11 PM
Response to Original message
12. Here's how to legalize pot: activate the THC gene in Dandelions. Done.
Edited on Wed Sep-16-09 04:12 PM by berni_mccoy
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RainDog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-16-09 10:50 PM
Response to Original message
20. what a waste of money
legalize this plant and stop this bullshit.
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The Midway Rebel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 12:02 AM
Response to Original message
26. We already have THC free "hemp" plant
Here in the midwest it is called ditch weed (among many other names) and it can grow 15 feet tall. It is a feral species that the law wastes a lot of time trying to eradicate in the war on poor folks...oops I mean...drugs. Far meres around here were paid by Uncle Sam to grow this species of hemp imported from China during WWII. Wild birds love the seeds, but the stuff wouldn't get a goat high. Trust me.

Also, this article is misleading and perpetuating several marijuana myths. Firstly, the THC is not contained in what most would view as the "the hairs" on the flower. High concentrations of THC are found in the very tiny mushroom shaped structures extruded from the stomata and calyxes surrounding the flowers. You could remove all the little red hairs from a flower or large bud and not get high from smoking them alone. It is not possible to judge the THC content of a plant by looking at "the hairs" nor the tiny glass like structures of the dried resins on the flower. I have heard from very reliable sources of cannibas that had red hairs and glistened like a bowl of sugar frosted corn flakes that had an apparent very low THC content.

Additionally, THC is not the only psychoactive ingredient in the plant. There are at least 60 THC related chemicals, nearly all them having some effect, along with set and setting, on the quality, duration, intensity of the high.

Lastly, I call bullshit on the marijuana with 25% THC content. How do they come up with this number? By percentage of weight of the plant? Stems and all? No way! If you find some marijuana like that, send it to my laboratory for further study.

Mmmmmm....sugar frosted corn flakes.
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