Medicinal cannabis is used to relieve the symptoms of certain medical conditions, such as epilepsy. Cannabis is a controlled substance and until recently was illegal in many jurisdictions. Consequently, the study of this plant has been restricted. Proteomics studies on Cannabis sativa reported so far have been based primarily based on plant organs and tissues other than buds, such as roots, hypocotyl, hempseeds, and flour. Therefore, we set out to develop mass spectrometry-based proteomics methods to analysis the reproductive organs of medicinal cannabis.
In this study, we first optimised protein extraction from medicinal cannabis apical buds and trichomes exploring six methods for top-down analyses by UPLC-MS. We then optimised protein digestion on the highest yielding protein extract by testing four endoproteases independently or combined for middle-down and bottom-up analysis by nLC-MS/MS. The most efficient methods will be applied to the comparison of different medicinal cannabis strains.