Testing and Quality Control for Medical Cannabis

Carlos Ferreiro Vera, (c.ferreiro@phytoplant.es) Phytoplant Research S.L, Spain in collaboration with CannabiMatch LTD , Israel (mordechai@cannabimatch.com)
C.Sánchez-Carnerero Callado, Phytoplant Research S.L, Spain in collaboration with CannabiMatch LTD , Israel

The use of medical Cannabis is becoming widespread around the world. This fact justifies current research on industrial hemp and entitles institutions to carry out cultivation of legalized hemp in their pilot programs.

Medical cannabis can be taken in many forms – from inhalation by vaporizing its inflorescences, to edibles and tinctures, cannabinoid-rich lotions, serums and oil.  As a result, testing and quality controls in the emerging medical cannabis industry are extremely important to ensure the health and safety of medical cannabis users and patients.

The aim of this communication is to present the main quality control methods for medicinal plants, focusing on Cannabis, in order to protect medical cannabis users and patients and to establish quality standards and specifications, typical of medicinal grade herbal products, within the overall context of quality assurance.

In this communication we will summarize some of the techniques used to measure potency and to detect chemical or microbial contaminants, covering both the simplest methods and some high-tech lab equipment, such as Gas and High-performance Liquid Chromatography and Mass Spectrometers. The final goal is to assure the quality of medical cannabis products whilst addressing the questions that patients need to know to make informed decisions (such as the cannabinoid and terpenoids profiles, whether the product is free of pesticides and other contaminants, if it was grown organically or the effects of using the product).

Correct protocols in testing and a quality control are in the best interest of all, from the producer to the patient, to ensure the safety of all cannabis products.

Short Biography of Presenting Author

Carlos Ferreiro obtained his degree in chemistry from the University of Cordoba in 2008 and earned his PhD in Analytical Chemistry in 2011. His research has focused on the development of new analytical platforms in metabolomics for finding new biomarkers and in the exploitation of waste from the food industry to search for new nutraceuticals, dyes and products with high added value. He was a member of the Institute of Biomedicine Maimonides of Cordoba (IMIBIC). Currently, he is the analytical research manager in the R & D department in Phytoplant Research, a company dedicated to medicinal plants and natural compounds including hemp. As a result of his scientific activity, he has published numerous articles in high impact journals, and various oral presentations and posters at national and international conferences.

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