Originally post’d by: Robert Hempaz, PhD Trichometry™; Photo courtesy of GeorgiaToons dot com; Annotations by the Medical Marijuana Initiative of North America- International
Marker Assisted Breeding In Cannabis
Marker Assisted Breeding, or (MAB) is a pioneering development whereby seed vendors attempt to isolate genes or combinations of genes that switch on and off epigenetically in concert with environmental factors to express certain desirable traits in Cannabis sativa L. and her accessions without the need to shotgun the nucleus of the seed with foreign genes extracted from the laboratory.
No introduction of foreign genes, no Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO).
Hence, the recent purchase by Monsanto of several promising seed companies to hedge their corporate bets against their existing portfolio of massively introduced GMO products that currently pollinate the wild of our continents in unfettered abandonment.
One of those seed companies is a specialist breeder in Cannabis sativa L.
Going toe-to-toe with GV Pharmaceuticals of Great Britain in the race to develop novel ways to increase our nation’s supply of beneficial cannabinoids and other terpenes such as CBD, THC - V, CBN, limonene, myrcene, and pinene lands Monsanto squarely at odds with the patient cannabis breeder of yesteryear.
Patience is NOT a virtue when developing traits to incorporate into future plants for the #MedMj and #RecMj marketplaces.
As a proprietary seed vendor, you want the benefit of those traits to be planted today, and you want the revenue streams from the sale of those seeds NOW!
However, conventionally breeding and weeding out of undesirable characteristics within Cannabis sativa L. while at the same time retaining characteristics that are currently considered to be ‘desirable’ may take many generations of accessions (and, corresponding years) to isolate that one pure-bred strain that you all are looking for.
Plus, keeping an alternative pathway open during the development of your ‘uber’ strain allows hybrid vigor to be reintroduced into the line via back-crossing when required.
All the while seeds from each generation must be captured and stored in a sort of non-virtual Git Hub that can then be reselected when mother plants by nature start to die and cut less vigorous clones than when initially germinated and allowed to grow to a mature size.
Today, MAB allows the lab technician to simply sample DNA from one of the early leaves of the plant to determine the alignment of genetic markers that signal the desirable and once thought to be ‘undesirable’ traits of any plant.
For millennia, local cannabis breeders have been pushing the plant to create ever increasing amounts of THC - A, the precursor to a smoked THC molecule.
But, today, with medicinal emphasis placed squarely back upon the non-psychoactive cannabinoids and other terpenes present within the natural plant, MAB analysis and manipulation have accelerated our quest for plants that produce inverse ratios not unlike the hemp accessions that are co-dominate for CBD.
The hunt for THC - V rich plants such as may be found within the ‘Jack Herer’ strain and CBN ‘lite’ plants such as Arjan and Franco’s award winning ‘Super Lemon Haze’ from the Greenhouse Seed Company NL may also turn up varietals rich in the primary aromatic terpenes (limonene, myrcene, and pinene), as well.
The time to identify ideal candidates to breed forward that lock-down the traits that you wish the plant to express (or, conversely NOT express) is accelerated using MAB methods.
Try 160,000 genetic markers in a couple of days of lab analysis today versus yesteryear’s 10 to 20 discoverable genetic markers in a couple of years of 24/7 pounding!
Now, you begin to see the reason Monsanto is so eager to dip their grubby corporate paws into the Cannabis sativa L. line of the Cannabacaea family of plants that includes the Humulus lupus varietal commonly known as ‘hops’ that traditionally has given the beer market a product of high aromatic quality.
Isolate the traits, patent the breed, market the brand, and presto!
You’ve got operating leverage that can be milk’d for a century (or, at least until you sell the patent a few years before expiration).
In the interim, sales explode and you become a rich man, or a rich woman.
Take your pick!
Either way, get planting!
"He who sows n tills the ground w care & diligence in one season acquires a greater stock of religious merit, than he who sits n repeats 100,000 prayers per day!" ~ Lao Beiji Shong (old northern bear)
Source: Scientific American
Visit: Cannabuds™ Grow Store
Article Publisher | Robert Hempaz, PhD Trichometry™
Compile’d by: ♑ Robert Hempaz, PhD Trichometry™;
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