Cannabis Science Conference West 2019 Analytical Cannabis Keynote Speaker, Day 1

Megan L'Heureux

Columns | <b>Cannabis Voices</b>

Dr. Markus Roggen, CEO, Complex Biotech Discovery Ventures, discusses his keynote talk “Collaborative Research for Fundamental Insight into Cannabis Production” from the 2019 Cannabis Science Conference West. 

Dr. Markus Roggen, CEO, Complex Biotech Discovery Ventures, will give a keynote talk today in Exhibit Hall B at 9:10 a.m. The talk is titled “Collaborative Research for Fundamental Insight into Cannabis Production.” Roggen recently spoke to us about his talk and what he hopes attendees will learn from it.

Can you give us a little preview of your keynote talk for the 2019 Cannabis Science Conference West? Dr. Markus Roggen: In this keynote, I present Complex Biotech Discovery Ventures (CBDV’s) latest data and findings, and discuss the reason two specific factors are key, not only to our progress, but to the entire cannabis industry’s future: A collaborative, multidisciplinary research team, and a focus on science fundamentals instead of bright, shiny things. This presentation will not be a commercial pitch, but a walk-through of the different fundamental factors governing cannabis production. As it is considered for a keynote slot, I plan to mix hard data from our lab with a philosophical call to action to jointly move the field forward. Our team has undertaken statistical analyses of supercritical CO2 and ethanol extraction and performed computational studies on THCA and CBDA decarboxylation. We have also developed in-process analytical tools and protocols that we see as vital to the growth of the industry. In the spirit of collaboration, our team will make available an optimization template for producer to use in their extraction operation.

What do you hope attendees will take away from your keynote?

Roggen: Cannabis science is lacking behind other industrial fields, and to play catchup we have to put in a concerted effort into fundamental cannabis research. And my argument here is that we need to collaborate on research to quickly close the knowledge gap. The cannabis industry comes with a history of secrecy, but only open, transparent and communal research will enable us to build a solid foundation of scientific understanding and build trust with the general public.

What are you hoping to learn or take away from this year’s conference? Are there any other talks you plan to attend?

Roggen: It is nearly impossible to pick out one talk that I am especially looking forward to. All the talks in the analytical section this year are very interesting to me as they describe work into tracking molecules in cannabis of various forms. Conor Jenkins presents work in comprehensive profiling of cannabis molecules, Dr. Sven Ehlert talks about analyzing cannabis smoke for its molecular make-up, and Jiries Meehan-Atrash shows work into studying degradation of cannabis extracts. And that is just the morning session. I am lucky my presentation is early, so that I can focus on learning from my colleagues.