The potency of cannabis plants and their concentrations of cannabinoids within the plant are determined by the alleles they contain.

An allele refers to one of two or more versions of a gene. In medical cannabis genetics, different alleles can influence the plant's characteristics, such as THC and CBD content, which are crucial for its medicinal properties. Your body's response to different cannabis strains can vary based on your own genetic alleles.


How do alleles affect medical cannabis treatment?


Alleles can determine how a cannabis plant produces cannabinoids, like THC and CBD, which are key for medical treatments. These genetic variations can affect your body's reaction to different strains of medical cannabis. A prescribing specialist might consider this when recommending a specific cannabis-based product for your treatment.


Can testing for specific alleles improve the effectiveness of medical cannabis?


Yes, genetic testing can identify your specific alleles, which can help predict your body's response to different cannabinoids. This can enable your prescribing specialist to tailor your medical cannabis treatment more effectively, improving its effectiveness and reducing potential side effects. But, this is not commonplace currently. 


Are there any legal implications of allele testing for medical cannabis in the UK?


In the UK, genetic testing for medical purposes, including for cannabis treatment, is legal. However, it must be conducted by a qualified professional with your consent. The information from allele testing is subject to strict privacy regulations to protect your personal data.


To find out more about alleles, click here