How Are New Cannabis Strains Created

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You might already be aware of some cannabis strains created through selective breeding. What if I told you that scientists are now creating new strains using synthetic DNA? Could these “designer strains” replace natural cannabis?

Cannabis has been around since ancient times. During the 19th century, hemp was widely cultivated for its fiber, food value, and medicinal properties. The plant became illegal under drug laws in the United States after 1937. In response, researchers began to develop cannabis varieties that would thrive without being able to consume them legally.

One of the first successful plants was a cross between Mexican Sativa and American Indica. This hybrid strain, called Haze, was developed in the 1960s at the University of Mississippi. Today, the majority of commercially grown marijuana strains are hybrids or crosses of two or three other strains.

Since then, cannabis breeders have taken advantage of genetic engineering to create new cannabis strains. In 2014, Canada approved the first genetically engineered cannabis Sativa for sale. Since then, dozens of companies have licensed patents for the genes needed to produce designer strains. By 2019, the global market for cannabis genetics should exceed 30 million dollars.

Cannabis strains are developed via breeding techniques, crossbreeding, and selective breeding. These methods commonly involve sexual reproduction between female and male cannabis varieties. There are many ways to do this, depending on the strain you would like to develop. You can breed two different types of hemp together to produce offspring.

These offspring may be crossed by hand, pollinated by bees, or genetically modified. To create a hybrid strain, however, both parents need traits that complement each other. If the parents carry opposite characteristics, then they cannot mate. As a result, the offspring produced will likely inherit those same characteristics. Sometimes, if the parents can complement each other well enough, the offspring will have unique traits.

New Cannabis Strains Creation Methods
Crossbreeding

This method involves mating a male cannabis variety with a female cannabis variety. Often, males are selected specifically for their high THC levels, while females are often chosen due to their high CBD content. If you want to select specific cannabinoids or terpenes, you will want to look at the parental lines of the cannabis strain you are working with. Selecting particular cannabinoids and terpene profiles can increase the chances that your offspring will show similar traits.

Selective Breeding

This method takes advantage of genetics. When choosing a female cannabis parent, you should choose the best cannabis variety possible. If you want to develop a high-THC strain, you should always select the sexiest female cannabis plant you can find. This way, you will have the best chance of producing the highest amount of THC in your offspring.

Genetic Modification

If you are interested in developing a cannabis strain that does not exist already, genetic modification is the only way to go. By modifying the genes of the cannabis plant, you can change the resulting trait of the plant. For example, if you were trying to create a low-THC strain, you could modify the gene responsible for making THC. This means that the next generation of plants would have the exact trait you were looking for.

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