Nimbin Mardi Grass 2017. Photo Tree Fairy
Would you like to learn more about the cannabinoids you use? Researchers at Monash University are trying to answer the questions “Is cannabis the same?” and ‘How do its variations affect us?’ and they reach out to the Northern Rivers community for answers.
“We wanted to focus on the Northern Rivers region, whose cannabinoid profiles are more diverse than in the big cities,” says Yann Chye, research associate on the Cannabis Components Research team.
Lead researcher Professor Murat Yücel says: “We know that cannabis is an enormously diverse plant. It contains hundreds of chemical compounds known as cannabinoids. However, we don’t know much about how they affect us. ‘
Using state-of-the-art high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC-UV), they hope to quantify the levels of cannabinoids in the cannabis that participants regularly smoke and see if various cannabinoids interact with participants’ wellbeing.
Early data illustrates the breadth of cannabinoids present in cannabis. This very profile underscores the importance of taking into account the diverse properties of the cannabis plant rather than minimizing its variance by assuming that all cannabis is the same.
Despite COVID restrictions, the Melbourne-based study team continued to work with the community and use the Zoom video calling software to conduct all of the assessments.
“We didn’t want to leave this incredible community when we faced COVID hurdles. For so many people, the effects of cannabis are life changing, for better or for worse. Hearing these stories and relating people’s experiences to what they consume is really exciting and meaningful work, ”says Yann Chye.
The research team has now analyzed 29 samples and interviewed over 30 participants, but significantly more participants are needed for this.
They encourage community members from the Northern Rivers area – both cannabis users (who smoke cannabis more than 3 days a week) and non-users to participate in the study.
The participants complete three online interviews over a period of five months and are remunerated for their time. Cannabis users are also asked to provide 3 x 0.5 gram samples of the cannabis they have consumed over the five month period. In return, they receive a cannabinoid profile from each sample.
Go to tiny.one/cannabis-components to register your interest or contact the research team on 0414 202 371 or [email protected]
Spread the word! It is time for this research to be done!