With so much changing day-to-day with medical cannabis and the looming legalization date in Canada, it can be easy to miss some of the updates. We publish weekly recap blogs of the top stories from the cannabis world, so you can stay in the know.
News cycle for May 14 to 21, 2018:
- Pennsylvania to lead the US on medical cannabis research: Although the United States government has made it difficult for the scientific community to research the medicinal benefits of the cannabis plant, Pennsylvania is determined to lead the nation in medical marijuana research. This week, state powers awarded eight applicants, including the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, with the green light to learn more about the plant’s ability to treat various conditions. So far, no other state has opened up shop for cannabis research in the way that Pennsylvania has.
- An experimental drug derived from cannabis to treat epilepsy is on the brink of becoming the first of its kind to win US government approval. The drug is called Epidiolex, and it’s active ingredient is cannabidiol, or CBD. According to new research, CBD appears to help reduce seizures in two of the hardest-to-treat forms of epilepsy, known as Lennox-Gastaut syndrome and Dravet syndrome. The researchers found strong evidence that an even lower dose of Epidiolex was effective for curbing seizures.
- A team of researchers from the University of British Columbia Okanagan is working on streamlining the process of testing the potency of cannabis. “Using some advanced analytical instrumentation, we can give you an exact number for the different bio-active compounds that are in the cannabis,” Noesthedon said. The active compounds that Health Canada and marijuana producers are most interested in are Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and Cannabidiol (CBD). But, the BC researchers are interested in looking at many more components of cannabis.
- A study conducted in Tel Aviv has revealed the benefits of cannabis use for symptoms of Parkinson’s disease. Of the 47 participants, a grand majority – 82 percent – said cannabis “improved their overall symptoms.” These patients experienced reductions in pain, stiffness and tremors. They also reported enhanced mood and sleep quality, as well as fewer falls. “The results of our study demonstrate that most of the users had found medical cannabis to improve their condition, and that MC treatment was safe, without major side effects,” the study reads.