There aren't many biotechs that have research underway targeting the development of cannabinoids. One of them is Ginkgo Bioworks (DNA 0.54%), which recently went public through a merger with a special purpose acquisition company. In this Motley Fool Live video recorded on Sept. 22, 2021, Motley Fool contributors Keith Speights and Brian Orelli answer a viewer's question about this biotech with a cannabis connection.
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Keith Speights: Grant asks, "What do you know about DNA? Great ticker, surprised it was available."
Brian Orelli: Yeah. This was the old Genentech ticker. Genentech the ticker was DNA and then it got acquired twice by Roche. But eventually, it got fully acquired and taken over by Roche. It got acquired by Roche, and spun out, and then reacquired by Roche. That's why the ticker DNA was available because nobody took it over after Roche. This is Ginkgo Bio something that technology, I can't remember the rest of the-
Speights: BioWorks, I think.
Orelli: Yeah, BioWorks. I knew it was in biotechnology, but I couldn't come up with it. This is a synthetic bio company. I think the biggest worry with synthetic biotech is that you have to understand both, how can they make the drug or the product, which often isn't drugs. But then you also have to understand their potential for the products that they're making.
I think that's really the difficulty with synthetic biotech companies, as you have to understand both the science, but you also need to understand the potential for their products which may be completely unrelated to biotechs.
I think we saw one earlier this year that failed and it was developing a coating for foldable screens for phones. If you don't understand the market for foldable sweet screens, then you can't really understand what the potential of the company is.
Speights: For those of you who follow the cannabis space, Ginkgo also has its toes in the water in cannabis. I think it's working with Cronos Group (CRON 0.66%), which is a Canadian cannabis producer, to develop basically cannabinoids using fermentation processes. Healthcare and cannabis, interesting stock. Like Grant said, they managed to get hold of a really great ticker to use.