Cannabix Technologies Inc. (CSE: BLO) (OTC PINK: BLOZF) (the “Company”), is pleased to announce that it has entered into a research and option agreement to develop a cutting edge breath detection device based upon high-field ion mobility and mass spectrometry in collaboration with the Yost Research Group at the University of Florida. The Yost Research Group is a world leader and pioneer in the development of high-field asymmetric waveform ion mobility spectrometry, known as FAIMS. Cannabix and The Yost Research Groupwill be working together to identify Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC- the psychoactive component of marijuana that causes intoxication) in ultra low ranges using highly sensitive FAIMS and FAIMS-mass spectrometer systems (FAIMS-MS).
The objective of the research and collaboration between University ofFlorida and The Yost Research Group and Cannabix will be to develop FAIMS and FAIMS-MS systems that would be used in the field by law enforcement and in the workplace to test for individuals under the influence of marijuana. The The Yost Research Group has been actively working on THC detection using mass spectrometers since early 2015.
The Yost Research Group has advanced the ability to detect THC in simulated breath using their novel FAIMS cell with mass spectrometry. Researchers have successfully isolated THC and some THC-related compounds in simulated breath samples using a unique method. Work is ongoing to ultimately develop a hand-held instrument based on FAIMS that will capture breath and identify the signatures for THC in real time.
The research and patent option agreement immediately allows forCannabix to seamlessly carry on development work that has been done by the Yost Research Group using the FAIMS and FAIMS-MS systems. The agreement provides Cannabix the option to acquire an exclusive worldwide license to University of Florida US Patent 8,237,118 in the area of breath analysis of controlled substances and to work with the Yost Research Group to develop THC-specific FAIMS and FAIMS-MS devices.
Dr. Raj Attariwala, lead engineer for Cannabix stated, “FAIMS-MS is a technology that combines the lab standard detection capability of conventional mass spectrometry with high chemical selectivity and will allow Cannabix to greatly improve upon the THC reliability detection threshold. Collaborating with one of the field’s foremost experts in a lab facility of the caliber of the Yost Research Group indicates our commitment to work with the best qualified people and technology to allow us to develop a device for direct real time THC breath analysis.”
Kal Malhi, President of Cannabix commented, “We are pleased to partner with the leading expert in mass spectrometry. Dr. Yost is a pioneer in the fields of MS and FAIMS-based miniature spectrometers. Our partnership with The Yost Research Group and the University of Floridaimmediately diversifies Cannabix’s portfolio of breath testing technologies for THC. Our objective is to develop a handheld breathalyzer that will provide precise medical grade and court accepted results at the roadside. Our new partnership boosts our ability to deliver a durable, portable hand-held tool to the market to help detect marijuana impaired driving offences on our roads at a time when marijuana is becoming legal in many jurisdictions globally.”
Richard A. Yost, the Colonel Allen and Margaret Crow Professor and Head of Analytical Chemistry at The University of Florida, commented, “Data show that THC can be found in detectable limits in human breath for a period of two hours after consumption. This short amount of time necessitates an instrument be available onsite. High-field asymmetric waveform ion mobility spectrometry (FAIMS) is a highly selective atmospheric-pressure separation technique that has the potential to provide a portable, field capability for the detection of THC. We are excited to further develop this technology in partnership with Cannabix Technologies Inc.”
Update on Alpha Prototype
The current iteration of the Alpha prototype is primarily used for testing purposes to help establish key features and define the direction of future component iterations by eliminating unnecessary features and design aspects early in the process. The Alpha version of the Cannabixbreathalyzer utilizes spit separation technology to avoid contamination of THC breath samples collected for analysis.
To date, the Alpha Version testing has achieved positive results in detecting THC with medicinal marijuana users, however the results obtained have not been consistent under varying test conditions and subjects. Cannabix will continue to further refine the Alpha Version and work with experts in efforts to be able to achieve medical grade and legally acceptable test results. The Company anticipates further modifications to the AlphaVersion to increase sensitivity and reproducibility of results and is waiting on further test results and technological modifications prior to making a decision to move towards production of a Beta version. The Company reports that an updated patent application has been filed in relation to the Alpha Version. Updates on the progress of the Alpha Version will be provided as they occur.
About Cannabix Technologies Inc.
Cannabix Technologies Inc. is a leader in marijuana breathalyzer development for law enforcement and the workplace. Cannabix has established a diversified portfolio of breath testing technologies in the pursuit of bringing durable, portable hand-held tools to market to enhance detection of marijuana impaired driving offences on roads at a time when marijuana is becoming legal in many jurisdictions globally. Cannabix is working to develop drug-testing devices that will detect Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC- the psychoactive component of marijuana that causes intoxication) using breath samples. These devices would be used to provide detection of use of THC at the roadside to identify drivers intoxicated by the recent use of marijuana. In particular, Cannabix is focused on developing breath testing devices for THC detection that would target recent use of THC, (within a two hour time period at time of testing) in contrast to saliva or urine testing for THC which can test positive for periods long after intoxication has worn off. The devices will also be useful for other practical applications such as testing employees in the workplace where intoxication by THC can be hazardous.
About The Yost Research Group at the University of Florida
Research in the Yost Group at the University of Florida is led by ProfessorRick Yost and centers on instrumentation, fundamentals, and applications. Instrumentation development includes a wide range of projects in tandem mass spectrometry (MS/MS) and ion mobility. The Yost Research Group is developing and evaluating high-field asymmetric waveform ion mobility spectrometry(FAIMS)coupled to a mass spectrometer for the analysis of various compound classes including THC. Dr. Yost’s research has involved over 100 graduate students funded by over $40 million in research grants, and has led to the publication of over 160 papers and 16 patents. Over $30 billion worth of instruments have been sold based on these patents.
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