GB Sciences Inc. recently announced that all of the mother cannabis plants in its Las Vegas, Nevada, cultivation facility are the result of the company’s tissue propagation initiative, an advanced form of cloning. Plants that have been reproduced through tissue culture are closer to each other genetically than two plants grown with seeds from the same mother, like identical twins instead of siblings.
Cloning is already a common-use technique among cannabis cultivators, but tissue culture propagation offers some advantages to growing a full plant from a cutting dipped in rooting hormones. With the new technique, more offspring can be produced from a single mother plant, saving growers time and effort by reducing the necessary breeding stock.
The process also starts with a sterile growth phase, which removes molds bacteria and other pests that might have carried over from the mother plant, resulting in a healthier crop.
“Tissue culture propagation is the next wave in the production of pure medical grade cannabis at a commercial scale,” said GB Sciences’ Dr. Ulrich Reimann-Philipp. Achieving success with tissue cultures is a necessary first step to genetically engineering cannabis to have larger yields, higher cannabinoid contents, or be more resistant to pests or pathogens.