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Sunrise Genetics, a startup out of Colorado, has developed a cannabis genome map, Bloomberg reports. It says the company presented it at the recent Plant and Animal Genome meeting in San Diego.

Just like other agricultural firms that focus on traditional crops, Bloomberg says Sunrise is interested in using genetic tools to then develop breeding programs for cannabis companies. Jason Schwartz, Sunrise's chief financial officer, say that his company is cannabis companies' outsourced R&D program.

Bloomberg notes that it has taken Sunrise longer to develop its cannabis genome map than it would for other crops because of its tricky regulatory status in the US: cannabis is classified as a controlled substance by the federal government.

Cannabis companies could use a genetic understanding of the plant to make new products like an energy drink or relaxing tea, or even explore whether it could be the basis for a new painkiller or other treatment.

"There's such potential to make things better, and that's really what our goal is: to guide that using modern techniques, which are employed all the time by all the major ag companies," CJ Schwartz, Sunrise's CEO, tells Bloomberg. "Cannabis pretty much now is catching up — as long as we don't get all thrown in jail."