CGF – Cannabis genetic fingerprints
A Game Changer in the Cannabis World
Israeli company develops system to identify, track cannabis strains Jerusalem post Jan 27 21
W have developed a revolutionary system for the characterization of genetic fingerprints in order to identify and track cannabis strains
The ability to identify cannabis strains accurately and reliably has for decades been considered as a ‘holy grail’ in the cannabis world.
We are making history – Tikun Olam – Cannbit have developed an in-house revolutionary genetic system for the identification and tracking of cannabis strains (aka cultivars and varieties), through the characterization of the genetic fingerprints based on the DNA sequence of each and every cannabis plant. True to its role, the system is called: Cannabis Genetic Fingerprinting, or ‘CGF’.
Putting an end to the mess – the CGF system changes the rules of the game: The characterization of fingerprints by this system is being done by the genetic diagnosis of a variety of unique sequences along the cannabis plant’s genome, based on a number of consecutive genetic technologies. The genetic fingerprint is actually a biological and totally natural barcode (Non-GMO), which accompanies the plant throughout its complete life cycle, and in some cases, into the final product.
The CGF system is expected to play as a substantial “game changer” in the cannabis industry, as well as set a standard in terms of strain’s identification, genetic stability, uniformity (reducing the deviation ranges in the active ingredients profile), repeatability and thus resulting in improved ‘Therapeutic Continuity’(a crucial aspect in basing the legitimacy of cannabis as a medical product), Intellectual Property (IP) registration and protection, organization’s strains bank management and tracking of cannabis strains in the future cannabis market.
Asaf Salmon, the Geneticist & Scientific Development Manager of the company in recent years, has been leading the development of the CGF says that The one and only parameter that independently characterizes every cannabis strain, defines its traits,
its therapeutic properties and differentiates it from all other cannabis strains in the world, is its unique genetic sequence. Therefore, determination of the plant’s identity based on its typical DNA enables an independent, reliable and statistically valid identification, more so than any other biological parameter we have had so far. All this from the fact that a strain’s DNA sequence is the exclusive source of its identity.”
With the technical support of the ‘Plant Metabolism Laboratory’ from the ‘Migal’ Research Institute in the north galilee of Israel, Tikun Olam Cannbit has recently completed all the development and construction phases of a revolutionary genetic system, which enables cannabis strains identification with accuracy and reliability that has never before been seen in the cannabis world. This ability to identify strains accurately and independently has been considered for many decades as a “holy grail” of the cannabis world. A world comprising thousands of strains, with no ability to identify which is which in an objective manner, or to effectively track and monitor strains over time in the global space.
A proper use of the system is expected to utilize the biological potential of every cannabis strains bank, in terms of quality, uniformity, repeatability and vitality, from the growing stages to the final product. All that, while upgrading and streamlining the abilities to control and manage the strains bank, and all the varieties it contains, as well as preserve the strain’s value over time. In fact, this is a necessary step which allows for the first time, the creation of a permanent and robust ‘biometric ID card’ for each cannabis strain.
Till today, the identification of cannabis plants has been based on the characterization of its observable measured traits. Traits such as plant’s height, color tone of the leaf, stem’s diameter, the measured active ingredients profile and many more expressed and variable characteristics. However, the plant’s traits are in fact varying, depending on hundreds of external varying factors, unrelated to the plant itself or its identity. Factors in the level of environmental conditions, cultivation methods, storage, as well as measurements and procedures. Factors such as lighting and radiation, fertilizers, humidity, pests, diseases, temperature, measurement tools, work methods and many other variable factors. Depending on these variables, the characteristics of the tested plant may also vary along with his identity, which is diagnosed accordingly.
In other words, the process of identifying the ID of a cannabis plant has until now been based on many varying external and subjective parameters, which has made its identification extremely unreliable and led to many faulty identifications. This, in addition to the accumulation of mutations along the plants propagation, causes a fixation of genetic variability within the strains populations and leads to a huge mess, which among other things, expresses itself in the fading and weakening of the strains traits, as well as a decline in the strains uniformity and repeatability (the importance of which has been touched upon), which in turn entails a continuous deterioration in the quality and value of the strains over time.
Apart from the obvious use of the CGF system to identify unknown cannabis plants and hence also to identify different types of products, the company believes that based on this system, the process of registering strains as an IP rights, can also be substantially improved and streamlined. For example, rights such as Breeders’ Rights and/ or registering a Patent, in accordance with generally accepted procedures in each country, will be simplified, straightforward and significantly improve the ability to protect ownership rights.
The CGF system is currently in the midst of the last phase, or the commercialization phase, also called “scale up”, which is expected to provide a cost effective and fast technical platform and to enable ongoing and big scale commercial use of the system. Upon the completion of this phase, the system will operate for needs of
Tikun Olam Cannbit. In addition, the company, or foreseeably a new separate and neutral legal entity will probably be formed, allowing Cannabis Genetic Fingerprint Characterization services available to anyone interested in Israel and around the world.
Any characterization of such a fingerprint will require a very quick and straightforward procedure, including sampling a leaf from the tested plant and sending it for the test itself. In cases where sampling is outside the borders of Israel, the service consumer must first take care of extracting the DNA from the leaf sample through laboratory services (a quite simple technical process) in the country of origin, and only afterwards the DNA sample will be sent for fingerprint characterization by the CGF system in Israel. After characterization, the tested plant genetic fingerprint will be sent to the customer, for convenient reading, use and comparison, along with a certificate of the strain’s unique genetic fingerprint.
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QA department leads continuous improvement processes in accordance with the requirements of IMC-GAP, IMC-GMP and IMC-GDP standards.
As part of the department’s work, internal and external audits are conducted, managing exceptional events and change controls and, if necessary, corrective actions and statistical process control.
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