EXCLUSIVE: Michigan's Lion Labs & Lake Superior State Univ Partner To Advance Cannabis Research

Lion Labs Ltd., Michigan’s leading licensed medical and recreational marijuana processor and Lake Superior State University (LSSU), the nation’s first accredited university to offer a degree program focused on the analysis of cannabis compounds and contaminants, have established a long-term research partnership. 

This collaborative research and education partnership became official at the end of February in a ceremony at LSSU’s Crawford Hall where the Lion Labs Institute for Cannabis Processing was unveiled. The event was attended by Lion Labs’ leadership and LSSU administration, including Dr. Rod Hanley (President), Dr. Lynn Gillette (Provost), and Dr. Steve Johnson (Dean of College of Science and Environment), as well as faculty and students. 

“We’re thrilled to have the opportunity to directly impact student-based cannabis research at the university level,” said Dr. Jonathan Kane, Chief Scientific Officer at Lion Labs, which is based in Lansing.

“Our goal from the beginning has been to positively impact the lives of those looking for symptom relief through cannabis and to shed light on the science of cannabis through translational research methods. To be aligned with such a forward-thinking group like Lake Superior State University is a privilege; this will allow us to not only add to the literature and understanding of cannabis but to shape this emerging industry for the better,” Kane added. 

Dr. Johnson called the collaboration and launch a milestone in cannabis studies at LSSU, which is dedicated to cannabis research, education and technology development. 

“Three years ago, we positioned ourselves at the forefront of cannabis education and worked closely with our collaborators to determine what that would look like. LSSU takes due diligence to continually adapt to meet the needs of the ever-changing cannabis landscape,” Johnson said. “LSSU and Lion Labs value where the future of cannabis education is inevitably going, which is research. Today, Lion Labs has invested in the future of students at Lake Superior State University."

What’s In The Partnership?

With this arrangement, LSSU will continue its commitment to building connections with cannabis industry experts to provide students with the best available technology and instrumentation and will support student networking and career prospects. To help further these initiatives and support open-source development for the industry, Lion Labs will donate $200,000 to LSSU.

Ryan Ratzloff, CEO of Lion Labs, echoed the significance of this venture. 

“Lion Labs is passionate about driving our industry forward through a better understanding of the science—which is paramount to processing, testing, and cultivation. There is so much the world does not yet understand about the plant,” Ratzloff said. 

Cannabis Research…Not A Moment Too Soon

The unique Lion Labs-LSSU arrangement loosely coincides with the House of Representatives’ approval of the Medical Marijuana Research Act, which will substantially expand scientific research on marijuana. 

“Discovering the unknowns and sharing our findings with the community is exciting and inspires the work we do on a daily basis. We look forward to working with LSSU to enhance student research in the Cannabis Chemistry and Cannabis Business programs,” concluded Ratzloff.


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