Identification of transcription factors involved in cannabinoid biosynthesis and glandular trichome formation – Year two

As an important medicinal plant, Cannabis sativa produces bioactive molecules that provide symptom relief for conditions such as severe cancer pain, nausea and vomiting associated with chemotherapy. The cannabinoid biosynthetic pathway that generates bioactive molecules has been studied for over a decade. However, understanding of transcriptional regulators that control cannabinoid synthesis is fairly limited. The primary site of cannabinoid biosynthesis is glandular trichomes that form on female flowers. Transcription factors have been shown to play a role of importance in trichome formation and development in model plant Arabidopsis and a closely-related species Humulus. The underling regulation mechanisms of cannabis trichome formation remain ambiguous. If the regulatory network controlling cannabinoids synthesis can be well established, it will open the door to modify or breed marijuana plants for improved pharmacological properties. Identifying transcription factors that involved in cannabinoid biosynthesis and glandular trichome formation will enrich the knowledge for biotechnological modification of cannabis.

Faculty Supervisor:

George Haughn


Yuanyuan Liu


Anandia Laboratories Inc




Life sciences


University of British Columbia



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