Cannabis sativa has long been harvested for industrial applications related to its fibers. Industrial hemp cultivars, a botanical class of Cannabis sativa with a low expression of intoxicating & UDelta;9-tetrahydrocannabinol (& UDelta;9-THC) have been selected for these purposes and scarcely investigated in terms of their content in bioactive compounds. Following the global relaxation in the market of industrial hemp-derived products, research in industrial hemp for pharmaceutical and nutraceutical purposes has surged. In this context, metabolomics-based approaches have proven to fulfill the aim of obtaining comprehensive information on the phytocompound profile of cannabis samples, going beyond the targeted evaluation of the major phytocannabinoids. In the present paper, an HRMSbased metabolomics study was addressed to seven distinct industrial hemp cultivars grown in four experimental fields in Northern, Southern, and Insular Italy. Since the role of minor phytocannabinoids as well as other phytocompounds was found to be critical in discriminating cannabis chemovars and in determining its biological activities, a comprehensive characterization of phytocannabinoids, flavonoids, and phenolic acids was carried out by LC-HRMS and a dedicated data processing workflow following the guidelines of the metabolomics Quality Assurance and Quality Control Consortium. A total of 54 phytocannabinoids, 134 flavonoids, and 77 phenolic acids were annotated, and their role in distinguishing hemp samples based on the geographical field location and cultivar was evaluated by ANOVA-simultaneous component analysis. Finally, a low-level fused model demonstrated the key role of untargeted cannabinomics extended to lesser-studied phytocompound classes for the discrimination of hemp samples.
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