PhD Cand. (WSU), M.HerbMed (USyd), BHSc
(Nat), DBM, DRM Dip Nut, FNHAA. Research Fellow, NICM
Health Research Institute, Western Sydney University
Cannabis – History, botany and phytochemistry
Cannabis is one of humanity’s oldest cultivated crops and medicines, with many academics believing it has been used for well over 10,000 years, likely predating writing in our human evolution. Cannabis has been a revered medicine in numerous cultures throughout the Ages, including Indian, Chinese, Assyrian and Egyptian cultures, with cannabis finally being formally introduced into Western medicine in the 1800s by Dr William O’Shaughnessy. Since this time, research has been increasing exponentially to explore the genetics and phytochemical complexity of the Cannabisgenus. This talk will take the audience back to our earliest written records of cannabis use, take a brief sojourn through important ethnopharmacological time points of its medical implementation and extend into a detailed look at the modern botany and morphology of the plant. Concluding the lecture will be a discussion of the various phytochemical classes found in cannabis, including the cannabinoids, terpenes/terpenoids and flavonoids (cannflavins).