The Science of the Cannabis Plant with Allison Justice PhD | #77

In this behind-the-scenes episode we meet plant scientist Dr. Allison Justice. Dr. Justice is the founder of the vertically integrated hemp company The Hemp Mine, located in South Carolina. She is also the founder of the Cannabis Research Coalition – a research organization formed in partnership with Clemson University that is dedicated to pursuing practical agricultural research on Cannabis to provide answers relevant for farmers, extractors and product manufacturers.

In this conversation we explore Allison’s own research into the Cannabis plant, ranging from studies on light intensity, photosynthetic rates, harvest techniques, drying parameters, curing and more. We also discuss the challenges that Cannabis cultivators in the southeastern United States are facing when trying to utilize plants sourced from places with very different climates like California, Oregon or Colorado.

We cover a lot of ground in a short amount of time, so get ready to take notes, buckle up, and let’s learn together!

The Hemp Mine: https://www.thehempmine.com

Cannabis Research Coalition: https://www.cannabisrc.org/

Jeff Lowenfels is Teaming with Bacteria (From Isn’t Life Curious?) | #76

In this feature from the Isn’t Life Curious? podcast, we meet virtually with gardener and author Jeff Lowenfels to discuss the magic that occurs in the microscopic world just beyond our eyes. Jeff just published a new book, Teaming with Bacteria, that unveils the incredible role of the Rhizophagy cycle by which plants act as “ranchers” to tend bacteria, bring them in for shearing, and then send them back to pasture for a time before the process starts again. Jeff explains how plants feed on these bacteria in a mutually beneficial way to get nitrogen and growth hormones while the bacteria get a safe space to exist with minimal competition.

But what does all of this mean for the common gardener or farmer? It means we can grow plants in an even smarter, mindful manner that takes advantage of the Rhizophagy cycle to reduce the need for fertilizers and excess inputs!

Check out Teaming with Bacteria (as well as the other three books from the “Teaming…” series) from Timber Press: https://www.workman.com/products/teaming-with-bacteria/hardback

Life is a curious thing. Let’s explore it together! Subscribe to Isn’t Life Curious? and learn more about the show at http://www.isntlifecurious.com

Catching Up with Murphy Murri on Benzene, Medusa Stones, and Owning the Quality of Your Lab | BTS #75

In this behind-the-scenes episode we caught up with Murphy Murri for an extended discussion about the current state of the Cannabis industry, extraction supply chain quality issues, medusa stones, mushroom extraction and more.

Medusa stones are concentrated lumps of cannabinoids that, rather than having a clear “diamond” appearance, has a chalky appearance. And like you might expect, the “diamond” disintegrates after being handled, turning into a sticky, chalky mess. So what causes the medusa stone phenomenon in Cannabis extracts? During this conversation, Murphy breaks down the phenomenon and the controversy surrounding the hunt for the cause behind these disappointing creations.

Due to some technical difficulties on the day of recording, this discussion was recorded on Zoom instead of our usual platform, resulting in some compromised audio quality.

The Endocannabinoid Jam (“Interstellar Chillhop Vibes” by Mattjs Muller Remixed feat. Curious About Cannabis

Enjoy this chillhop jam dedicated to endocannabinoids and the endocannabinoidome!

Base song is “Interstellar Chillhop Vibes” by Mattjs Muller which was remixed by Jason Wilson featuring samples from The Curious About Cannabis Podcast, including the following episodes:

BTS #35 Vincenzo di Marzo PhD,

BTS #5 Ethan Russo MD, and

BTS #4 Kevin Spelman PhD

Sniffing Out the Skunk in Cannabis with TJ Martin of Abstrax Tech | BTS #74

In this behind-the-scenes episode we caught up with TJ Martin of Abstrax Tech to discuss their research into Cannabis extracts and the chemistry that impacts the plant’s aromas and flavors. We talk about their discovery of a family of sulfur compounds in Cannabis that are largely responsible for the skunk smell of Cannabis. We also discussed their prior research into vape pen additives and what kinds of compounds may be emitted from heated vape pen additives.

To learn more about Abstrax Tech, visit www.abstraxtech.com

Abstrax is a flavor and fragrance manufacturer that specializes in cannabis and hop raw materials, terpenes, and aroma compound research to innovate terpene driven product formulations that shape consumer packaged goods. Abstrax specializes in botanical research, ingredient manufacturing and formulation science with a specific focus on terpene research.

T.J. Martin graduated with a B.S. in Chemistry from CSU Polytechnic Pomona. He gained experience with a wide array of analytical techniques and research applications by collaborating with groups in the fields of chemistry, solid state physics, green chemistry, materials science, and polymer science. Currently T.J. is the VP of Research and Development at Abstrax where he creates custom flavor solutions and research fundamental and applied facets of cannabis science via Abstrax Labs.

Research Articles Mention in This Episode:

Identification of a New Family of Prenylated Volatile Sulfur Compounds in Cannabis Revealed by Comprehensive Two-Dimensional Gas Chromatography

Iain W. H. Oswald, Marcos A. Ojeda, Ryan J. Pobanz, Kevin A. Koby, Anthony J. Buchanan, Josh Del Rosso, Mario A. Guzman, and Thomas J. Martin. ACS Omega 2021 6 (47), 31667-31676. http://doi.org/10.1021/acsomega.1c04196

Characterization of Vaping Emission Products from Commonly Used Vape Juice Diluents
Huanhuan Jiang, C. M. Sabbir Ahmed, Thomas J. Martin, Alexa Canchola, Iain W. H. Oswald, Jose Andres Garcia, Jin Y. Chen, Kevin A. Koby, Anthony J. Buchanan, Zixu Zhao, Haofei Zhang, Kunpeng Chen, and Ying-Hsuan LinChemical Research in Toxicology 2020 33 (8), 2157-2163. http://doi.org/10.1021/acs.chemrestox.0c00174

Cracking the Cannabis Enigma with Elana Kirsh Goldberg CEO of The Cannigma | BTS #73

In this behind-the-scenes interview we speak with Elana Goldberg, CEO of The Cannigma, an educational website focused on bringing readers scientifically-backed and reliable information about Cannabis. In our discussion we talk Elana’s history as a content creator and journalist working for The Jerusalem Post, the early days of The Cannigma and how the platform has evolved, lessons learned regarding Cannabis content creation and science reporting, core understandings about Cannabis that stand out to Elana after years of creating Cannabis content, and more! We also spin out into a discussion about Elana’s interests in mindfulness meditation and how Cannabis can sometimes be a tool for mindfulness.

About Elana: Elana is the CEO of The Cannigma. Born and raised in Sydney, Australia, she currently lives in Israel with her two kids and neurotic dog. She has 15 years of experience developing online content products, including publications such as JPost.com, Goodnet.org, and Top10.com, and is passionate about delivering clear, compelling messages that anyone can understand. When she’s not in front of the computer or pacing around on the phone, you can find her meditating, lifting weights, or camping with her family.

Learn more about The Cannigma here: https://www.cannigma.com

Use discount code “cannigma” for 1 FREE month access to The Curious About Cannabis Membership Platform at http://member.cacpodcast.com/

Want a Successful Cannabis Business? Be a Crock Pot, Not a Microwave! with Alisia and Chris Ratliff | BTS #72

In this behind-the-scenes episode we join up with Alisia Ratliff once again, this time joined by her husband Chris as we catch up and learn about the work they are doing in their consulting agency, Victus Consulting Ventures. We dive into a number of topics including the science of surfactants for Cannabis products, lessons learned from years of Cannabis business consulting, issues facing Cannabis cultivators that try to scale, and more!

The takeaway? Be a crock pot, not a microwave.

Learn more about Victus Consulting Ventures at https://www.victus-cv.com/

The Curious About Cannabis Ultimate Learning Experience 2022

Get in on the biggest Cannabis science education event of the year! Spend 15 weeks learning alongside over a dozen of the Cannabis industry’s leading scientists, clinicians and industry professionals as we dive deep into the science of Cannabis, cannabinoids and the endocannabinoid system!

Learn more at http://ultimate.cacpodcast.com/

Insects and Cannabis with Matthew Gates of Zenthanol Consulting | BTS #71

In this behind-the-scenes conversation we join for the second time on the podcast, integrated pest management specialist Matthew Gates. For this episode we focus exclusively on Cannabis pests and what Cannabis cultivators should be on the lookout for this coming outdoor season, as well as pests that indoor cultivators need to be thinking about. Our chat spins out into an interesting discussion on insect – plant adaptations and evolution that I hope you will enjoy.

Stay curious, and take it easy!

More from Matthew Gates:


Zenthanol YouTube Channel

Research References From This Episode:

Genomics of adaptation to host-plants in herbivorous insects

Simon JC, d’Alençon E, Guy E, Jacquin-Joly E, Jaquiéry J, Nouhaud P, Peccoud J, Sugio A, Streiff R. Genomics of adaptation to host-plants in herbivorous insects. Brief Funct Genomics. 2015 Nov;14(6):413-23. https://doi.org/10.1093/bfgp/elv015 . Epub 2015 Apr 6. PMID: 25846754.

Interactions between plant defence signalling pathways: Evidence from bioassays with insect herbivores and plant pathogens

Moreira, X, Abdala-Roberts, L, Castagneyrol, B. Interactions between plant defence signalling pathways: Evidence from bioassays with insect herbivores and plant pathogens. J Ecol. 2018; 106: 2353– 2364. https://doi.org/10.1111/1365-2745.12987

Susceptibility Genes 101: How to Be a Good Host

Chris C.N. van Schie and Frank L.W. Takken. Susceptibility Genes 101: How to Be a Good Host. Annual Review of Phytopathology 2014 52:1, 551-581.

Inspiring a Passion for Extraction Science and Technology with John MacKay, PhD | BTS #70

In this behind-the-scenes episode of The Curious About Cannabis Podcast we drop in with natural products extraction expert John MacKay, PhD. Dr. MacKay has been involved in both extraction and analytical technology for decades and has gained a lifetime of experience that he is eager to share with others. An avid educator and lifelong learner himself, Dr. MacKay teaches about Cannabis and mushroom extraction through the John MacKay Institute of Extraction Technology where he offers engaging hands-on workshops to teach the fundamentals of natural products extraction as applied to Cannabis and mushrooms. He is also a professor through several universities where he teaches about biochemistry. John is a wealth of information and has a solid sense of humor, so I hope you enjoy this conversation!

Learn more about the John MacKay Institute of Extraction Technology: https://www.extractioninstitute.com/

Learn more about Synergistic Technologies Associates: https://www.synergistictechassociates.com/

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