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Researchers Use Yeast to Synthesize Cannabinoids

Although hemp farming has become far more commonplace in the recent years, certain phytocannabinoids that could have therapeutic value remain difficult to procure. Plants simply do not produce these compounds in significant enough concentrations.

An international research team, however, has found that they can biosynthesize some of these phytocannabinoids by adding cannabis pathway enzymes olivetolic acid and geranyl pyrophosphate to brewer’s yeast (Saccharomyces cerevisiae). As noted in Chapter 4 of the handbook, these are the precursors to the more familiar pentyl cannabinoids such as cannabigerolic acid (decarboxylated form: cannabigerol (CBG)), cannabidiolic acid ((decarboxylated form: cannabidiol (CBD)), and Δ-9-tetrahydrocannabinolic acid (decarboxylated form: Δ-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)).

This method of harvesting cannabinoids could drastically reduce the costs associated with procuring rarer cannabinoids and allow for more robust studies on the potential therapeutic values of these compounds.

Cannabis Health Insider has more.

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