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CT’s Polymorphic Approach to Extracts: A Defining Aspect of our Products

This past Saturday I spent at my stand-up desk, enjoying the view of the Bay, Mt. Tamalpais, and the beautiful spring weather in between my efforts to describe to our patent attorneys why my approach was unique in 2008. A patent examiner much younger than me wants to know why combining four strains to achieve a clinical goal wasn’t obvious in 2008.

2008 Industry Products: Bud, Kief, Hash, and Bombs

There were no cannabis extracts, except those done with illegal and unclean butane for dabbing in the black market. Channel 2 in the Bay Area interviewed me in 2015 when an apartment building in Concord was blown up, burning 5 people, and destroying the building. What was the difference, the public wanted to know, between our extracts Israeli scientists were so interested in and illegal products made in a now bombed out apartment building 20 miles away.

Kief and hash were concentrated mechanically for recreational purposes only and are concentrates but not extracts. Constance Therapeutics was the first company to make distillate in California; always and only full spectrum and organic from the beginning. We don’t now and never have made “crude”.

How “Crude” Got its Name

The crude oil recreational illegal projects were making from trim–what was thrown away by the grower, a legal liability such that trash bags of it were left on highways in Humboldt and Trinity counties, was a thick sludgy chlorophyl filled hot mess they gave away as “compassionate” gifts to sick people. That crude, aptly named, was the beginning of the medicinal cannabis movement’s rationale. Maybe the government had a point back then but for different reasons than they espoused. “How much Eagle 20, (a pesticide that leads to birth defects in frogs in trace amounts), is in the burned sludge?” My response was why do “the patients” get this?! and “stoners” get the premium flower?” I decided to never depart from premium aesthetics from the flower only in all our products for those who wish to use cannabis consciously and for engagement with life, rather than avoidance and escape.

Clinical Discovery Happens in the Real World

  • In 2008, no one knew why extracts we made had very different effects including no hangover after their use. I started by growing multiple strains to see what worked for my purposes. Is it the THC or the CBD or both? We were the first company to sell CBD in commercial products.
  • Is it the “strain” or chemovar? A study from Bedrocan in the Netherlands showed 60% of what California growers labeled their strains were incorrect by chemical analysis. I could reliably clone and grow the chemovars I had, but what were their proper names and history.
  • GW Pharma was on a hunt for the ONE strain that would reduce MS induced pain. Robert Clarke perfected GW’s one chemovar, incorporating the terpenes they identified as helping with neurological pain. Aiming for a 1:1 CBD:THC variety, ending up with a 1:1.2  ratio, inexactly promoted as 1:1. GW’s cultivar team only formula didn’t stop GW’s attorneys in 2014 claiming ratios I pioneered, that GW had no experience with, and that evidenced unusual efficacy in our initial explorations.
  • Until Dr. Dedi (David) Meiri showed in Israel, in work he presented in 2018 at Cannatech Tel Aviv, where we were both Scientific Advisers, that the cryo extraction methodology I pioneered in cannabis was a primary reason for the differentiation of CT’s results, there was little known about why we were receiving so much attention. He then went on to explain the rationale for my product development philosophy genetically as abstractly superior. Until all 500 plus bioactive compounds in cannabis are known definitively for their mechanisms of action and synergistic interactions, combining multiple known strains is superior to developing the ONE perfect strain. Obviously, rather than hunting for one flower that includes all that is needed, use four or eight different flowers that together offer the known compounds you’re after and a whole lot more -that may prove to be as helpful or more for your intended purposes, was what we thought.

Click here for the press release honoring me at Cannatech in Tel Aviv.


Exploring the development of cannabis as medicine. With Constance Finley, Melanie Kelly and Bill Cheliak, and Sharlene Mavor, from Medical Cannabis Research.

  • CT was the first to take a polymorphic approach to achieving cannabis effects. Until our clean extraction technology and conception existed there wasn’t a method to do so. In addition to tracking our known chemovars and what was reported about their use, gathering data; we pioneered the extraction methodology and brought a product development philosophy that was counter to the industry’s approach at the time. Everyone was hunting the world over for their perfect strain, or who could breed the perfect strain they were after. My thinking is more inclusive, and I pioneered the polymorphic approach in cannabis extracts. It’s one of our most important achievements and furthered the industry in general, but it wasn’t obvious in 2008.


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