UBC Faculty Research and Publications

Advances and Perspectives in Tissue Culture and Genetic Engineering of Cannabis Hesami, Mohsen; Baiton, Austin; Alizadeh, Milad; Pepe, Marco; Torkamaneh, Davoud; Jones, Andrew Maxwell Phineas; Alizadeh, Milad


For a long time, Cannabis sativa has been used for therapeutic and industrial purposes. Due to its increasing demand in medicine, recreation, and industry, there is a dire need to apply new biotechnological tools to introduce new genotypes with desirable traits and enhanced secondary metabolite production. Micropropagation, conservation, cell suspension culture, hairy root culture, polyploidy manipulation, and Agrobacterium-mediated gene transformation have been studied and used in cannabis. However, some obstacles such as the low rate of transgenic plant regeneration and low efficiency of secondary metabolite production in hairy root culture and cell suspension culture have restricted the application of these approaches in cannabis. In the current review, in vitro culture and genetic engineering methods in cannabis along with other promising techniques such as morphogenic genes, new computational approaches, clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR), CRISPR/Cas9-equipped Agrobacterium-mediated genome editing, and hairy root culture, that can help improve gene transformation and plant regeneration, as well as enhance secondary metabolite production, have been highlighted and discussed.

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