A Netherlands-based company called Medicinal Genomics has just announced the successful genetic sequencing of Cannabis sativa, the highly regulated annual plant that has been widely consumed for centuries as an intoxicant and a medicine. The plant, known in the vernacular as grass,tea, or mooster, has been legalized in 16 U.S. states for use as a medical treatment for various disorders over the last decade, and according to Medicinal Genomics' Kevin McKernan, the legal market for the substance is currently growing by 50 percent every year.
There's a lot of misinformation blowing around out there concerning the medical benefits, and detriments, of smoking marijuana, but two UK researchers are making an argument for why you should perhaps pass on the puff-puff -- as well as why recreational use should not be outlawed in the future.
In one of the few scientific developments likely to interest both the Governor of North Dakota and Method Man, scientists at the University of Minnesota have identified the genes in cannabis that allow the plant to produce THC. Finding the genes opens the path to either create drug-free hemp plants for industrial purposes, or to develop plants with much higher concentrations of the psychotropic chemical.
What happened to you, Holland? You used to be cool. As every popped-collar, half-witted frat boy and Bonnaroo-attending, blond dreadlock-wearing neo-hippie moron repeats ad nauseum, you were the country kindest to the kind bud.
Well, apparently Dutch robots aren't quite so accepting of a little puff now and then.
It's April 20th, National Weed Day -- the unofficial national holiday of stoners everywhere. From the party to end all parties at the University of Boulder to the crowning of Ms. High Times at an undisclosed New York City location this afternoon, the skunky perfume of cannabis is in the air. But this year, those who toke at the altar of Mary Jane may have a little more to celebrate. In politics and the media, the legalization of marijuana seems to be gaining traction.