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The future of cannabis research is rife with potential. As more countries and states move quickly to incorporate reforms to age-old drug policies, cannabis has moved out of the shadows of its former self, and now stands tall as a therapeutic agent of much interest to the scientific community.

To many researchers, the plant and its chemical components are understood as two separate entities. In labs across the world, studies focus on isolating specific molecules from the cannabis plant for use in clinical trials, and ultimately new drugs. Chief among these companies is GW Pharmaceuticals, maker of Sativex, a popular oromucosal spray made of THC extract. 

Still others in the cannabis space work with the entirety of the plant, as well as its parts, with phytocannabinoids and terpenoids generating the most serious attention. There are currently hundreds of researchers and dozens of colleges and universities, mostly in Canada and the U.S., exploring the holistic prospects of the cannabis plant. 
Where cannabis is a definite anomaly is in the level of consensus and cohesion that exists, not so much between the culture and industry, but within the academic and scientific community that centres around this plant. Perhaps because of its versatility, almost every scientist in the space agrees that there are both myriad applications and innumerable possibilities for cannabis. 

Among those is Dr. Jonathan Page, adjunct professor of the Department of Botany at the University of British Columbia and founder of Anandia Labs. In addition to testing cannabis flowers and concentres, Dr. Page and his team are undertaking significant research in the area  of tissue culture and predictive profiling, among other work.

As head of a team that mapped the first cannabis genome, Dr. Page and the team at Anandia focus daily on improving the health and safety of the cannabis industry through science and research. In the context of what the future of cannabis medicine may look like, Dr. Page sees evolution of delivery methods and mechanisms as a surety.

“Whether it’s a micro-dose inhaler or patch or pill capsule or something that might not necessarily be smoked herbal cannabis,” he says, “I think the future will move toward pharmaceutical products in the mode of delivery, but it’s still a plant-derived mixture that presents all the complexity that the plant produces.”

A man of both wisdom and sense, Dr. Page is the personification of the plant he spends his days studying: enigmatic, yet unquestionably profound. While Dr. Page’s lab is only one of the hundreds – perhaps even thousands – that have their lens focussed exclusively on the puzzling cannabis plant and its chemical pieces, the work being done at Anandia is certainly cause for celebration.

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