Skip to main content
Premium Trial:

Request an Annual Quote

Puff, Puff

A Toronto, Canada-based company called Lobo Genetics is claiming to have developed a cheek swab-based, three-gene test for adverse response to THC in cannabis, the CBC reports.

The test focuses on the CYP2C9, AKT1, and COMT genes to predict an individual's ability to metabolize THC, as well as the risk for side effects such as memory loss, paranoia, and even schizophrenia. Even so, at least one doctor says it's too soon to market such a simple test for understanding the complex response to cannabis or potential risks associated with it.

Centre for Addiction and Mental Health researcher Bernard Le Foll notes that while the genes included in the test do seem to influence cannabis response, the test does not encompass many more genes or environmental factors that might play into the risk of adverse effects for pot smokers.

In an genome-wide association study published in Nature Neuroscience last year, members of the International Cannabis Consortium highlighted eight SNPs at half a dozen sites in the genome that appeared to contribute to cannabis use, in general — a set that pointed to potential genetic overlap with other conditions ranging from schizophrenia or risk-taking to smoking and alcohol use. An earlier study in JAMA Psychiatry identified three loci linked to cannabis dependence, and suggested pleiotropy between those variants and those involved in major depressive disorder.

The Scan

ChatGPT Does As Well As Humans Answering Genetics Questions, Study Finds

Researchers in the European Journal of Human Genetics had ChatGPT answer genetics-related questions, finding it was about 68 percent accurate, but sometimes gave different answers to the same question.

Sequencing Analysis Examines Gene Regulatory Networks of Honeybee Soldier, Forager Brains

Researchers in Nature Ecology & Evolution find gene regulatory network differences between soldiers and foragers, suggesting bees can take on either role.

Analysis of Ashkenazi Jewish Cohort Uncovers New Genetic Loci Linked to Alzheimer's Disease

The study in Alzheimer's & Dementia highlighted known genes, but also novel ones with biological ties to Alzheimer's disease.

Tara Pacific Expedition Project Team Finds High Diversity Within Coral Reef Microbiome

In papers appearing in Nature Communications and elsewhere, the team reports on findings from the two-year excursion examining coral reefs.