For many years, life science companies have been using biosynthesis to make a range of medical products, including insulin, human growth hormone, and blood clotting factors. In the recent past, researchers have shifted to using biosynthesis to accelerate the production of cannabinoids, including cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). According to recent research by Persistent Market Research, the cannabis biosynthesis industry will experience a growth rate of 15.5% from 2021 to 2031. Also, The Pharma Letter reports that cannabinoid biosynthesis products will hit $92 billion by 2040. These figures show the immense potential for cannabis biosynthesis. This technology is an excellent alternative to the conventional methods of producing cannabinoids which have environmental impact.
What Is Cannabis Biosynthesis?
Biosynthesis involves creating complex compounds from simple substances used in living organisms. Although cannabinoids are found in cannabis plants, it’s possible to produce them in other ways like biosynthesis. The biosynthesis process results in creating molecules similar to naturally existing cannabinoids in the lab. These lab-made compounds evoke the same effect as natural cannabis molecules. Most companies synthesizing cannabinoids via biosynthesis use yeast. Yeast is combined with water, carbon dioxide, sugar, and enzymes to produce cannabinoids during the process. The lab-made cannabinoids are bioidentical to cannabinoids extracted from plants.
Is Cannabinoid Biosynthesis an Opportunity or a Threat?
Currently, the cannabis and cannabinoid industries are booming, and there are no signs of slowing down soon. Thanks to cannabinoid biosynthesis, pharmaceutical companies can optimize this technology to meet the increased demand for their cannabis products in different parts of the world. Cannabinoid biosynthesis presents an excellent opportunity to the pharma world to create cannabinoids with higher purity and reduce the costs associated with cannabinoid farming. This technology also facilitates the synthesis of cannabinoids found in small quantities in the cannabinoid plant. These are cannabinoids that are rare but offer immense potential to the pharmaceutical industry. Biosynthesis is the only way to produce these molecules in large amounts.
Cannabinoid biosynthesis also allows the production of cannabinoids at an affordable and faster pace than the conventional methods used, such as chemical synthesis and growing cannabis plants in fields and greenhouses. Cannabinoid biosynthesis will help reduce the stigma associated with growing cannabis and other legal issues affecting the growth and marketing of cannabis products. Most cannabinoids of immense medical importance exist in minimal quantities in their natural form and are also costly to produce. For example, you require 10 kilograms of cannabis plants to produce 2 grams of cannabinoids; this is not the case with cannabis biosynthesis.
According to Deloitte, cannabis biosynthesis offers life science companies a promising opportunity to transform their businesses. This technology allows life science companies to produce high quantities of cannabinoids from controllable factory environments and ensure the products are of high quality and have minimal environmental impact. The huge environmental impact of natural cannabis production is one of the primary driving factors for cannabinoid biosynthesis.
Another major advantage of cannabinoid biosynthesis is that it avoids using cannabis plants, ensuring the products have no THC, meaning the products will not be subject to any narcotic regulations. Pharmaceutical companies attain cannabis biosynthesis using manufacturing techniques that enable them to produce bioequivalence of the naturally occurring compounds. Additionally, these techniques enable them to achieve better quality control purification. Although the initial investment is high, cannabinoid biosynthesis companies can rip profits from the investment in the long run.
Cannabis Biosynthesis Is the Future of the Industry
Among the emerging technologies transforming the cannabis sector, cannabinoid biosynthesis is likely to lead to significant growth of this industry and the production of high-quality products, including cannabinoids that exist in very low quantities in cannabis plants. This technology will help create more products of medical importance and help solve challenges facing the treatment of most common diseases, including chronic illnesses.