New research will help improve cannabis categorization

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The cannabis ecosystem continues to mature thanks to the efforts of research efforts

The cannabis market is evolving at a pace that few other industries know. One need only look at photos from the 1977 High Times Cup to see the difference between those championship flowers and those that now adorn any dispensary. The industry continues to advance rapidly, and that has made identifying and clinically researching cannabis plants and their unique chemical profiles a complicated task. In order to solve that obstacle, researchers at the University of New Mexico (UNM) joined forces with the software developers of the Releaf app.

Medical cannabis science has one fundamental factor: the categorization of marijuana flowers. In order to accomplish this process, regardless of strain names and other arbitrary characteristics that dominate existing cannabis, experts have come together. Through Releaf application data on cannabis phytochemical profiles and patient results, UNM experts developed the first marijuana flower indexing system.

Thanks to this system, it will now be much easier to distinguish individual plant strains based on their main terpene and cannabinoid content. UNM researchers, including Associate Professor of Psychology Jacob Vigil and Associate Professor of Economics Sarah Stith, have shown that unique chemovars differ in their therapeutic effects, something that had not been scientifically proven until now.

“I hope that by creating this comprehensive, common-sense, and easy-to-use indexing system, scientists, healthcare providers, and, most importantly, patients will be better able to identify and distinguish cannabis plant strains and their unique and desired effects, which is the ultimate goal of most cannabis-based research,” said Vigil, the principal investigator. It’s definitely a new study that becomes quite important for the medical cannabis industry.

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