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Students Can Now Study Medicinal Cannabis At University In New Zealand

Students Can Now Study Medicinal Cannabis At University In New Zealand

Auckland University of Technology offers country's first medicinal cannabis paper dubbed 'Cannabis 101'

Rebecca Shepherd

Rebecca Shepherd

Students in New Zealand will have the chance to learn all about medicinal cannabis at Auckland University of Technology (AUT).

The comprehensive paper, which will be offered from the second semester of the year (starting 20 July), has been dubbed the 'Cannabis 101' for those interested in the industry.

So, it's not exactly the 101 in spliffigami but an interesting development nonetheless...


Faculty of Health and Environmental Sciences Dean, Professor Max Abbott, says with New Zealand's medicinal cannabis scheme coming online, it's essential for research and education providers to develop courses to train students wishing to enter the industry.

Professor Abbott, a long-time advocate for cannabis law reform, explained: "Education is an important component of the medicinal cannabis scheme and by introducing this new postgraduate paper, AUT will be leading this field in New Zealand.

"We have ongoing research on medicinal cannabis cultivation, extraction and formulation which will inform much of the course's content."

Auckland University of Technology.

Students will be introduced to New Zealand's medicinal cannabis scheme framework and gain a general overview of the chemistry and pharmacology of cannabis.

This includes how to cultivate medical grade cannabis, how to extract and analyse cannabinoids and how formulate medicinal cannabis products.

Dr Ali Seyfoddin, course leader and senior lecturer in drug delivery, said: "This is a useful paper for any postgraduate student or healthcare professional interested in expanding their knowledge on medicinal cannabis.

"There will be theory and practical components although, with the ongoing COVID-19 situation it may be run it as an online course."

If you happen to be remotely interested in this, it's worth noting that subject areas covered by the course include but are not exclusive to:

  • Introduction to medicinal cannabis: History and legislation
  • Current New Zealand legislative framework for the cultivation and use of medicinal cannabis
  • The New Zealand medicinal cannabis scheme
  • Botanical aspects of cannabis, including breeding and cultivation of cannabis cultivars
  • Pre-formulation processing of herbal cannabis
  • Cannabinoid pharmacology, cannabinoid receptors and the endocannabinoid system
  • The chemistry of cannabinoids
  • Medicinal uses of cannabis
  • Extraction of cannabinoids
  • Analysis of cannabinoids
  • Cannabinoid delivery systems and dosing

Chris Fowlie, CEO of AUT's research partner ZeaCann, says the medicinal cannabis industry needs qualified staff with relevant expertise.

"This course will teach the skills needed to work in the field. Hundreds of new jobs are expected to be created, with the potential for medicinal cannabis exports to rival those of wine or wool.

"We're excited to help AUT deliver this course as part of our ongoing research partnership. Zeacann will leverage our extensive network of industry partners to provide practical content and access to global experts and key industry players."

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: New Zealand, Interesting, Cannabis, Community