​Optimized Cannabinoid Extraction Methodology Utilizing Liquid Extraction ©

Extraction Techniques

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Copyright / Methods / Procedures


​Kenneth Olejar
Chad Kinney

At A Glance

Researchers at Colorado State have developed a methodology for the thermo-chemical conversion of acidic cannabinoids in cannabis biomass to their neutral form by using pressurized liquid extraction. The extraction process provides a solution of cannabinoids in their neutral form for further purification and isolation.

The methodology developed here provides an alternative means for the extraction and isolation of cannabinoids that reduces energy requirements compared to traditional processes.

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Licensing Manager

Jessy McGowan

Reference No.: 2021-091


The cannabis plant produces acidic cannabinoids, though, many of the purported benefits come from the neutral form. Extraction of the neutral form is achieved through decarboxylation and is typically done through an energy intensive thermal process.  Unfortunately, cannabinoids are thermolabile and the application of heat results in their evaporation and degradation. Additionally, each acidic cannabinoid has an optimum temperature and time for the conversion process to occur.

Better extraction methods that are properly optimized are needed for both the cannabis industry and scientific research.

Technology Overview

Cannabinoid Extraction Methods developed here have been optimized to:


  • Extraction procedure designed to reduce time and cost
  • Pressurized liquid extraction is classified as “green” (environmentally friendly method)
  • Energy requirements are less than that of traditional extraction methods
  • Process uses water as a solvent
  • Loss associated with extraction is minimal
  • Process is considerably faster than traditional methods
  • Cannabis Industry
  • Cannabinoid extraction
  • Scientific research

Olejar KJ, et al. (2021) Submitted manuscript (Industrial Crops and Products).

Olejar KJ and Kinney CA (2021) Submitted manuscript (Journal of Cannabis Research).

Presentation scheduled at the Cannabis Research Conference (August 2021)

Presentation scheduled at PacifiChem (TBD)

Last updated: July 2021

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