About This Episode
With ample scientific proof that medical marijuana is not just a viable medical treatment, but also necessary for maintaining optimal health, it’s astonishing that so many higher education institutions have yet to recognize the legitimacy or value of cannabis study. More than 30 years ago, scientists discovered that cannabis unlocks the functionality of a vital internal system known as the endo-cannabinoid system, which governs immune and neurological responses in the human body. Since then, only a handful of medical schools have added courses on the endo-cannabinoid system in their doctoral syllabus. Fewer still have yet to sanction or allocate funding or resources for cannabis study and academic research at their institutions.
Ironically, federal law remains one of the biggest barriers deterring academic research, but federal law won’t change until more cannabis study is conducted in academic and clinical settings. Federal law also bars physicians from “prescribing” medical marijuana, which could explain why doctors seldom advocate for marijuana or go out of their way to learn more about it. Greater acceptance in the academic world is more likely if medical professionals take the lead. Their advocacy could help remove the negative stigma associated with marijuana, which is another deterrent barring universities from pushing for permits to conduct clinical studies and research.
The National Academy of Sciences issued a very important cannabis study last week, which may help to shift the paradigm among the academic community and support efforts to remove legal barriers to research. This came as good news to our guests, who have faced numerous obstacles and put their careers on the line to push for more clinical research as well as education for medical practitioners. We enjoyed interviewing them and hope you enjoy listening.
About Our Guests
Suzanne Sisley, M.D. is a board-certified psychiatrist who is well known for her in-depth study of cannabis as a treatment for PTSD and is a foremost authority on the emerging science. As a former clinical assistant professor at the University of Arizona College of Medicine, Dr. Sisley obtained approval by the National Institute on Drug Abuse to conduct a clinical study about the efficacy and safety of medical marijuana in treating veterans with PTSD. When political fallout barred her from conducting the controversial cannabis study at the university, she received a $2 million grant from the State of Colorado and resumed her research under the auspices of the non-profit Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies. Dr. Sisley’s cannabis study is now in Phase II of the FDA-sanctioned clinical trial with a number of veterans who suffer with PTSD.
Bryan Doner, D.O. is an attending Emergency Physician in the E.R. of Armstrong County Memorial Hospital in Pittsburgh, where he also serves as Medical Co-Director of the Wound & Hyperbaric Center, Medical Director of the Primary Stroke Center, and President/CEO of D&P Medical Group. Among his long list of credentials, he is Board-certified in Emergency Medicine and Hyperbaric & Wound Care Specialty, and is a Fellow of the American Professional Wound Care Association. Dr. Doner began extensive research in cannabis nearly five years ago and has also immersed himself in cannabis business as an investor and owner of a medical marijuana nursery and dispensary. As founder of Compassionate Certification Centers, Dr. Doner advocates for advanced cannabis study and educates medical practitioners about medical marijuana.