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The Cannabis Reporter clean The Cannabis Reporter info@thecannabisreporter.com info@thecannabisreporter.com (The Cannabis Reporter) Empowering through awareness, we provide in-depth information on cannabis, cannabis products, dispensaries and marijuana's cultural impact The Cannabis Reporter https://www.thecannabisreporter.com/wp-content/uploads/powerpress/The-Cannabis-Reporter-iTunes-Cover.jpg https://www.thecannabisreporter.com Global Impact: The Real Cost of Our Billion Dollar Drug War - The Cannabis Reporter https://www.thecannabisreporter.com/global-cost-billion-dollar-drug-war/ https://www.thecannabisreporter.com/global-cost-billion-dollar-drug-war/#respond Sat, 24 Jun 2017 21:44:56 +0000 https://www.thecannabisreporter.com/?p=31491 Former Prosecutor, LEAP Board Member and international development specialist Inge Frykland knows the real cost of the drug war, at home and abroad.

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About This Episode

Nearly one year ago we had the pleasure of interviewing former DEA Special Agent Finn Selander who shared his perspective on the War On Drugs here in the U.S. He is among thousands of law enforcement officers to join the Law Enforcement Action Partnership, formerly known as Law Enforcement Against Prohibition or LEAP. The organization advocates for an end to prohibition as a means of solving an ongoing drug problem, addressing the disparities in our criminal justice system and diminishing the power of violent drug cartels at home and abroad.Today we cover the global impact of the drug war with LEAP Board Member Inge Fryklund.

In the U.S., the drug war has resulted in more than 7 million arrests leading to more than 2.2 million incarcerations in the U.S. alone. The racial disparity is staggering. Statistics show that Caucasians outpace minorities in drug use and addiction and, yet, minorities are four times more likely than Caucasians to be targeted and convicted. While Caucasian addicts are likely to get court ordered treatment, people of color are more likely to be sent to Jail. The drug war also impacts impoverished communities in developing nations that are subject to conflict between drug enforcement and cartels.

While illegal drug activity siphons billions of dollars out of our economy into the hands of foreign cartels, more than $3.6 Billion per year has been spent on the drug war, with more spent on international military enforcement. Is it worth it?

That’s what we ask former Chicago Prosecutor Inge Fryklund, right after another edition of the Medical Marijuana Minute with Dr. Bryan Doner.

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About Our Guests

Inge Fryklund, J.D., Ph.D.
Inge Fryklund, J.D., Ph.D.

Inge Fryklund, JD, PhD is a former Chicago prosecutor, international development professional, and member of the Board of Directors of Law Enforcement Action Partnership, formerly known as Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP). She lends a well-rounded perspective of problems caused by the drug war at home in the U.S. and abroad. As a prosecutor, she became acutely aware of the racial bias of marijuana law in Chicago, where minority prosecutions outnumber those of Caucasians 7 to 1, which is nearly double that of the national average. Having lived and worked in the war-ravaged Afghanistan, she has seen the impact of the American-driven drug war on people living there first hand.

Acknowledgements

If not for the generosity of our supporters, we wouldn’t be here! We’d first like to thank our sponsors at Hemp Meds and Healthtera. We’d also like to thank our talented team at Star Worldwide Networks, Erik Godal, the composer of our theme “Evergreen,” Dr. Bryan Doner, our Medical Marijuana Minute contributor, XRQK Radio Network for broadcasting our show around the country, and Compassionate Certification Centers for helping us spread the word. We are grateful!

Listen Now

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Fentanyl-Laced Weed Is Now Being Blamed For Current Opioid Epidemic - The Cannabis Reporter https://www.thecannabisreporter.com/fentanyl-laced-weed-now-blamed-current-opioid-epidemic/ https://www.thecannabisreporter.com/fentanyl-laced-weed-now-blamed-current-opioid-epidemic/#respond Sat, 24 Jun 2017 21:30:56 +0000 https://www.thecannabisreporter.com/?p=37004 From Herb: In the latest scare tactic, U.S. Senator Rob Portman and the coroner of Hamilton County, Ohio Lakshmi Sammarco sent out a dire warning on Monday; cannabis is being laced with fentanyl. In a press conference to address the raging opioid crisis in Ohio, the two placed much of the blame on fentanyl-laced weed. The…

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From Herb: In the latest scare tactic, U.S. Senator Rob Portman and the coroner of Hamilton County, Ohio Lakshmi Sammarco sent out a dire warning on Monday; cannabis is being laced with fentanyl. In a press conference to address the raging opioid crisis in Ohio, the two placed much of the blame on fentanyl-laced weed. The problem? There’s absolutely no evidence to support their theory.

What is fentanyl?

Fentanyl is an incredibly potent synthetic opioid medication that is 50 times more potent than heroin and up to 100 times more potent than morphine. Its pharmacological uses are as an anesthetic or analgesic.

It is highly addictive and is certainly a danger on its own merits for sure, having claimed over 47,000 lives in 2014. While speaking to the press, Sammarco claimed,

We have seen fentanyl mixed with cocaine, we have also seen fentanyl mixed with marijuana.

Yet, the details are hazy. Sammarco could not offer any answers as to the number of fentanyl-laced weed instances authorities had found, nor could he produce any proof of overdoses that were a result of the combination when pressed for additional information.

Sammarco did make reference to the dangers of ‘street drugs’ however, to back up her point,

Essentially, the message we’ve tried to get out there is if you are using any form of street drugs, cound on them having some form of synthetic opioid mixed in.

You can’t make this stuff up

Officials In Ohio 2 Fentanyl Laced Weed Is Now Being Blamed For Current Opioid EpidemicSince Monday, it has become clear why Sammarco struggled to provide details on the matter. The Cincinnati Enquirer followed up with the DEA and Ohio local narcotics enforcement and found that there were zero recorded instances of fentanyl-laced weed.

In addition, their local medical examiner’s office has seen no overdoses due to the combination. As it turns out, Sammarco may have been misled by a series of posts circulating on social media with warnings about fentanyl being found in weed.

She also admitted that she’d been told that Portman, the U.S. senator who joined her in the press conference, had “told her it had been spotted in northeast Ohio,” but she didn’t know where or from whom the senator had received his information from according to VICE.

Historic fiction

Officials In Ohio 3 Fentanyl Laced Weed Is Now Being Blamed For Current Opioid EpidemicThis is not the first time that Portman has made these unfounded statements. In March, Sen. Portman told the Senate,

Drug traffickers are lacing other drugs with it [fentanyl]. I was told by the DART Task Force in Toledo that they’re actually sprinkling it in marijuana now, and people are showing up in the emergency room and overdosing on marijuana sprinkled with fentanyl. It’s more addictive, so the traffickers like it.

And even then, Portman’s claims were dismissed by the very source he says he obtained the information from. When asked about the statement, Lt. Bobby Chromik of the Toledo DART told MassRoots, “I personally have not heard it. That stuff is usually reported directly to me.”

It’s unclear what their true motives might be, but the best way to address the opioid crisis and save lives is to act upon fact-based evidence. Until then, this just sounds like this is just another instance of ‘reefer madness’ hysteria.

 Fentanyl Laced Weed Is Now Being Blamed For Current Opioid Epidemic

Tiffany King

I’m a passionate writer and copy editor living in Las Vegas, NV. My love for cannabis developed a bit later than most but it’s never too late to put my writing talents to good use as a cannabis advocate. I also enjoy topics such as, health, fitness, spirituality and self-empowerment. You can find out more about me at: www.tiffanysedits.com

 

This post was originally published at this location

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Mexico’s Former President Vicente Fox to Speak at 2017 Phoenix SWCCE - The Cannabis Reporter https://www.thecannabisreporter.com/vicente-fox-speaks-swcce-phoenix/ https://www.thecannabisreporter.com/vicente-fox-speaks-swcce-phoenix/#respond Wed, 21 Jun 2017 10:16:11 +0000 https://www.thecannabisreporter.com/?p=36621 Former President of Mexico, Vicente Fox, is slated to deliver the keynote address at the 2017 Southwest Cannabis Conference and Expo in Phoenix in October.

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Mexico’s former President Vicente Fox is slated to deliver the keynote address at the 2017 Southwest Cannabis Conference and Expo in Phoenix this October. Fox, who served as Mexico’s 55th president between 2000 and 2006, was known for being charismatic and outspoken, particularly on ecologically progressive issues during his term. Since leaving office, he joined the Global Leadership Foundation, a not-for-profit organization that offers, discreetly and confidentially, a range of experienced advisors to political leaders facing difficult situations. Today, he is an ardent advocate for medical marijuana and a vocal proponent of decriminalizing marijuana on a global scale.

The SWCCE has become a national franchise hosting annual events held in Texas, Florida, California and Arizona and the first to launch internationally in Mexico City in February 2018. Considered a business-to-business event bringing together experts from the local, regional and national cannabis industry to network, the SWCCE is also of interest to general audiences interested in learning about the industry.

Other keynote speakers include Bruce Barcot, the award-winning journalist and author of the bestseller, Weed the People, and a surprise speaker to be announced later this summer. Other presenters include number of industry pioneers, doctors and cannabis experts who are there to educate and inspire, not just showcase their businesses.

The conference also includes seminars from top industry leaders, an exhibit hall filled with businesses showcasing industry related products and services and opportunity for industry members, entrepreneurs, local leaders, companies, job seekers and curious individuals to come learn about the rapidly expanding cannabis industry.

The Phoenix event attracted hundreds of exhibitors and thousands of attendees last year. With high-profile advocates such as Vicente Fox headlining this year’s event, the 2nd to be held in Phoenix is expecting to attract even more, according to conference organizer, Demitri Downing, a former prosecutor and marijuana policy advisor. As always SWCC Expo will Featuring a unique theme, with this year’s focusing on THE CANNABIS WORLD OF TOMORROW. The 2017 SWCC Expo, which takes place at the Phoenix Convention Center on October 12, 13 and 14, promises an electric environment with a highly professional atmosphere where ideas for the future of cannabis will unfold.

 

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Sessions Faces Uphill Battle to Save The War On Marijuana - The Cannabis Reporter https://www.thecannabisreporter.com/sessions-drug-war-uphill-battle-carers-act/ https://www.thecannabisreporter.com/sessions-drug-war-uphill-battle-carers-act/#respond Tue, 20 Jun 2017 07:06:04 +0000 https://www.thecannabisreporter.com/?p=35605 The CARERS Act and a new coalition of conservative adversaries present an uphill battle on multiple fronts for Sessions' war on marijuana states.

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U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions may have anticipated little resistance when he sought support from House and Senate Leaders to wage war on states that have legalized cannabis for adult or medical use. In a letter dated May 1, 2017, he urged Congress to reinstate budget appropriations that would authorize the DEA to target offenders of federal marijuana policy in regulation states. Little did he know that, six weeks later, he would face an uphill battle on multiple fronts with new adversaries including a sleeper Congressional bill known as the CARERS Act and a new coalition of marijuana advocates lead by the conservative former Trump advisor, Roger Stone.

Several years in the making, the Compassionate Access, Research Expansion, and Respect States Act (CARERS Act) was first introduced in the House by Representative Steve Cohen (D-TN) as HR 1538 in April, 2015. It had amassed 31 bi-partisan co-sponsors by May last year, when it was sent to a number of committees for review.

In a surprise announcement on June 16, 2017, the CARERS Act was re-introduced in the U.S. Senate by original co-sponsors, Senators Rand Paul (R-KY), Corey Booker (D-NJ) and Kirsten Hillenbrand (D-NY). Two days later, Stone announced the formation of the United States Cannabis Coalition, a nonprofit advocacy with a mission to protect state’s rights to legalize and regulate marijuana.

The announcements must have come as blow to Sessions, who has on numerous occasions in the past voiced strong objections to state legalization measures on the basis that marijuana is a dangerous drug that belongs in Schedule One. He has vowed to reverse Obama Administration policy barring use of Federal funds to prosecute marijuana offenders in states that permit marijuana for adult or medical use.

His letter reiterated those objections in no uncertain terms and called for DOJ authority to carry out his intentions. Sessions expounded upon the danger that state regulation poses to society, naming the “historic drug epidemic” and “potentially long-term uptick in violent crime” due to “foreign traffickers operating under the guise of state laws” as a primary concern.

For reinforcement, Sessions referred to a report issued by the National Institute of Drug Addiction (NIDA) titled Drug Facts on Marijuana to validate his contention that marijuana is a dangerous drug with negative health effects including “psychosis, cognitive impairments, lung infections, [diminished] IQ, substance abuse disorder and addiction.”

Just how dangerous is marijuana?

To those who know and understand the safety, benefits and importance of marijuana to human health, Sessions’ interpretation appears to be misleading, taken out of context and devoid of pertinent facts. As explained in the NIDA report, deleterious effects often coincide with other mitigating factors or underlying health conditions. For example, contaminants such as mold or pesticides (frequently found in illicit marijuana) can cause serious lung damage; smoking any substance can lead to respiratory problems; and children and individuals predisposed to psychosis would likely be advised by their doctors to avoid any psychoactive drug including legally prescribed opiates and alcohol.

In fact, marijuana never caused a single death until it became illegal. Deaths reported to “involve” marijuana are often coincidental, caused by other factors such as gunshot wounds, car accidents or overdosing on other substances used in combination with marijuana. By constrast, legally prescribed synthetic opiates are responsible for hundreds of lethal overdoses reported in emergency rooms every day throughout the U.S. And, unlike alcohol and synthetic prescription drugs, marijuana has no adverse side effects with the possible exception of a somewhat uncomfortable euphoria caused by overconsumption of marijuana with high concentrations of the psychoactive molecule known as THC. Hemp, the non-psychotropic variety of cannabis, contains only traces of THC and has absolutely no adverse side effects at all.

The claim that marijuana has a “high potential for abuse” has also been widely disputed by the medical community. Statistics show that illicit marijuana use has declined significantly since 2010 when state regulation began, with the most prominent decrease among young people, according to NIDA.

Ironically, marijuana has shown to be effective in helping addicts overcome symptoms of withdrawal from opiates and other narcotics. Due to our body’s natural capacity to synthesize cannabinoids, it is physically impossible to overdose on marijuana. Scientists are now beginning to understand that endo-cannabinoid deficiency is a common thread in a number of autoimmune and neurological malfunctions that endanger human health.

Why should marijuana still be illegal? Because the DEA said so.

Sessions is asking Congress to ignore science, undermine state marijuana laws and reverse a hands-off policy established during the Obama Administration. At issue are the Rohrabacher-Farr Amendment, which restricted budget appropriations for DEA enforcement of federal medicinal marijuana laws, and a 2013 Executive Order signed by then President Obama directing the Justice Department to place a “low priority” on enforcing marijuana laws against businesses and organizations that comply with state laws. Were Sessions to win this battle, the DEA would be at liberty to threaten entrepreneurs and patients with prosecution regardless of state marijuana laws.

Why is this a good idea?  Sessions’ own words suggest that social consequences may be secondary to a more pressing ulterior motive: “It is thus unsurprising that, in the last [Obama] administration, both the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and the DEA concluded that ‘marijuana has a high potential for abuse, no currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States, and a lack of accepted safety for use under medical supervision,’ [according to the] August 2016 Denial of Petition to Initiate Proceedings to Reschedule Marijuana.

To imply that DHHS and the DEA formed their anti-marijuana position under the Obama administration is misleading. It’s telling, and comes as no surprise given the current administration’s fastidious efforts to erase policy initiated during President Obama’s eight years in office.

Barring that incentive, Congress would be hard-pressed to justify acquiescing to Sessions’ request without losing favor with voters who subscribe to the truth. Although, political aspirations supported by campaign contributions from the big pharma, private prison and alcohol lobbies could, perhaps, explain the repeated refusal of lawmakers to reverse prohibition thus far, despite popular opinion.

It also make sense that the DEA, in the interest of self-preservation, has held fast to its fallacious position since 1971, when the agency was created for the sole purpose of enforcing prohibition. Legalizing marijuana would render the agency mostly obsolete.

However, the reasoning behind the DHHS’s recommendation remains a mystery, presuming its reliance on science and the recommendations of the American Medical Association (AMA), which has voiced strong objections to marijuana prohibition on multiple occasions since Congress surreptitiously passed the first anti-marijuana law in 1942.

Alternative facts are fiction

Marijuana prohibition was founded on a lie initially fabricated by Reefer Madness in the 1930s, and then later signed, sealed and delivered in the Controlled Substances Act by President Nixon, per his own admission. There is consensus among historians that making marijuana illegal was intended to diminish the voting power of minorities and anti-war left who threatened Nixon’s political ambitions. Nearly 50 years later, prohibition remains a partisan issue favoring the right, with deleterious impact squarely on left-leaning minorities. According to the ACLU, minorities living in economically disenfranchised communities are four times more likely than caucasians to be arrested, prosecuted and incarcerated for non-violent marijuana offenses.

Despite the social injustice and evidence of medical viability, DOJ and Sessions are intent to perpetuate the arcane policy on the basis that, “Marijuana has no currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States.”

Perhaps it would have been more truthful to say that, In the United States, marijuana has no medical applications that are currently accepted by the U.S. Government. Although, not entirely so considering this irony: the U.S. Government owns the patent for use of marijuana as a neuro-protectant and anti-inflammatory medicine.

In an article in Scientific American, journalist David Downs summed up the hypocrisy of the Federal marijuana policy:  “It has come to be insulated by a byzantine, Kafkaesque bureaucratic process now impervious to the opinion of the majority of U.S. doctors—and to a vast body of scientific knowledge…”

The AMA and Institute of Medicine are among numerous medical, legal and scientific entities that have previously filed DEA petitions to re- or de-schedule marijuana. To date, all petitions have been denied, including those made internally.

In 1988, the DEA’s own administrative judge Francis Young petitioned for rescheduling based on research available at that time. In a public statement, he said, “marijuana, in its natural form, is one of the safest therapeutically active substances known to man. By any measure of rational analysis marijuana can be safely used within a supervised routine of medical care.” His request was also denied.

The latest petition filed in 2016 was denied a result of recommendations set forth by the DHHS and DEA, presumably based on information provided by NIDA, the bureaucracy charged with investigating harms of Controlled Substances.

Late last year, the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) analyzed hundreds of peer-reviewed articles and clinical studies and concluded that cannabis, indeed, has multiple legitimate medical applications. It also emphasized that more clinical, double-blind human studies are warranted and necessary – if only the Federal government would remove barriers to research.

Who benefits from the War On Drugs?

Barring ignorance, self-preservation or ulterior motive, there is simply no rational justification to spend more than $3.6 Billion per year since 1971 – at taxpayer expense – to perpetuate a war on a harmless plant.

Prohibition has enriched opportunity for cartels and drug traffickers to siphon billions of dollars from the U.S. economy into the black market overseas. It is now understood that the recent “uptick” in trafficking of illicit drugs is at least partly due to the DEA’s crackdown on “pill mill” doctors and new limitations on patient prescriptions. With opiate addiction at an all-time high, the limitations have bolstered demand for counterfeit pills and heroin, the next best fix, readily available on the street.

Hundreds of thousands of law enforcement officers concur, according to Law Enforcement Action Partnership (LEAP). Formerly known as Law Enforcement Against Prohibition, LEAP is just one of many credible organizations advocating for the full legalization of marijuana. It boasts a membership of more than 150,000 members comprised of current and former prosecutors, judges and law enforcement officers from civic police, and military police forces, the DEA, FBI, CIA and RTF who attest that legalization would make our cities safer and save millions of dollars in law enforcement.

And yet, Sessions maintains, “I believe it would be unwise for Congress to restrict the discretion of the Department (of Justice) to fund particular prosecutions.” Unwise? Let’s face it, the War On Drugs has caused more harm than good.

Millions of people have spent years in prison and lost their families, jobs and voting rights because they chose to self-medicate with a harmless plant. Meanwhile, legally prescribed opiates have caused millions of needless deaths and created a nation of addicts, many who became that way following advice of their doctors. Locking them up doesn’t solve the problem. Drug treatment programs for users would cost merely a fraction of imprisonment — and yield far healthier results for everyone concerned.

“Cracking down on drug crimes with harsher sentences isn’t going to make us safer,” said LEAP executive director, Maj. Neill Franklin (Ret), a 34-year veteran of the Maryland State and Baltimore Police Forces. “We already tried that. Drug war violence will diminish when we move the market into the legal sector and treat drug use as a health issue.”

In a legal battle with the Department of Justice over the DEA restrictions (U.S. vs McIntosh, 2016), the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld states’ rights to self-regulate drug policy. In his letter, Sessions objects to the ruling, which protects citizens from Federal prosecution when they abide by their own state’s marijuana laws. “As a result, in the Ninth Circuit, many individuals and organizations that are operating in violation of the [CSA] and causing harm in their communities may invoke the rider to thwart prosecution.”

On the one hand, Sessions argues that states should not have the right to regulate marijuana because under Federal law it is still an illegal controlled substance and, therefore, citizens using marijuana for any reason in those states should be prosecuted. On the other hand, he draws attention to the 9th Circuit Appellate Court ruling, which supersedes DEA policy and protects citizens in those states from Federal prosecution.

Therefore, even if Congress were to grant Sessions’ request, the DEA would have no jurisdiction to pursue prosecution for marijuana-related activity in those states unless a subject is acting in violation of state law.

Passage of the CARERS Act would, in part, resolve the discrepancy between Federal and State policy.

Can the CARERS Act stop the Reefer Madness?

It is becoming more and more difficult for Congressional leaders to ignore the truth: Marijuana is saving lives and doesn’t belong in Schedule I. States that have adopted marijuana regulation are creating jobs and realizing economic upsides that benefit education, healthcare, infrastructure and communities. They are also experiencing a drop in drug-related crimes.

Incidentally the same phenomenon occurred when alcohol prohibition ended; turf-wars came to a screeching halt and bootleggers became legitimized franchises that make significant contributions to the national GDP. Alcohol consumption has remained an acceptable pastime of American culture ever since, despite its dangers. Marijuana is far safer than alcohol, and has multiple benefits beyond the social.

It is only a matter of time before 31 states follow the lead of states now reaping the social and economic rewards of marijuana regulation. More than 79 percent of Americans are now in favor of cannabis for medical use, with more than 52 percent favoring adult-use legalization. In a recent survey of 1,500 physicians, 56 percent support legalization and, of those, 80 percent of oncologists say it’s a necessary for cancer patients. While the jury is still out with respect to the White House position, Trump advisor Roger Stone is just one of a number of conservatives now campaigning to protect states’ rights, breaking ranks with the DOJ and the majority of GOP lawmakers who are still against legalization. With fewer allies and waning public support for the marijuana war, Sessions’ agenda faces an uphill battle.

“Attorney General Sessions can expect a backlash,” Franklin continued, adding, “Americans do not want an escalation of archaic drug war policies.”

Empirically speaking, Congressional leaders would be wise deny Sessions’ request and end to the War On Drugs — if not for the best interest of their constituents, then at least for self-preservation. Those who choose to support his agenda may likely find themselves out of a job when their terms are up.

As with alcohol prohibition, the War On Drugs will one day be seen as a dark era in American history. Those who choose to embrace the truth will not only gain favor with a majority of Americans who now believe marijuana should be legal, they will build a legacy that will be remembered with respect and, in the end, emerge victorious.

U.S. Attorney General's Letter to Congressional Leaders

About the CARERS Act

CARERS Act Infographic - Amends the Controlled Substances Act; Reschedules marijuana; Allows states to import treatments; Provides veterans with access; Expands research opportunities; permits financial services.

 

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Have You Heard Of Delta-8-THC, The Other Psychoactive Cannabinoid? - The Cannabis Reporter https://www.thecannabisreporter.com/heard-delta-8-thc-psychoactive-cannabinoid/ https://www.thecannabisreporter.com/heard-delta-8-thc-psychoactive-cannabinoid/#respond Sun, 18 Jun 2017 22:29:22 +0000 https://www.thecannabisreporter.com/?p=36335 Did you know that delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is not the only psychoactive found in cannabis? Research suggests that a few of the cannabinoid’s closest relatives may also have some minor mind-warping effects. One of these compounds is delta-8-tetrahyrocannabinol (delta-8-THC). But, what is this obscure cannabinoid and what can it do? What is delta-8-tetrahyrocannabinol (delta-8-THC)? Delta-8-tetrahydrocannabinol is…

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Did you know that delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is not the only psychoactive found in cannabis? Research suggests that a few of the cannabinoid’s closest relatives may also have some minor mind-warping effects. One of these compounds is delta-8-tetrahyrocannabinol (delta-8-THC). But, what is this obscure cannabinoid and what can it do?

What is delta-8-tetrahyrocannabinol (delta-8-THC)?

Delta 8 THC 1 Have You Heard Of Delta 8 THC, The Other Psychoactive Cannabinoid?
Delta-8-tetrahydrocannabinol is a cannabis compound very similar to delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). Delta-9 is the most abundant and famous psychoactive in the herb. Delta-8-THC is a close cousin to delta-9. In fact, they are differentiated only by a couple of bonding electrons.

Delta-8-THC is one of the four major cannabinoids present in dried cannabis. In total, some experts estimate that there are 113 cannabinoids. While delta-9-THC may be one of the most common, it still often makes up far less than 1 percent in dried flower. In fact, there’s often only about 0.01 percent delta-8-THC in dried cannabis flower.

Apart from THC, the other common cannabinoids include cannabidiol (CBD) and cannabinol (CBN). Like “regular” THC, delta-8 is psychoactive. Though, it is considered slightly less psychoactive than it’s more famous relative.

In terms of potency, research suggests that the psychoactive strength of delta-8 can be compared to THC in a 2:3 ratio. This means that it is more potent than tetrahydrocannabivarin (THCV), which is thought to be responsible for the zippy, energetic high present in some strains. THCV only has a potency of about 25 percent of THC.

Delta-8-THC connects with the same primary landing sites as the traditional THC. This landing site is known as cannabinoid receptor 1 (CB1) and facilitates a wide variety of bodily functions, including mood, memory, pain, movement, sleep, and more.

The cannabinoid has also been found to connect with the cannabinoid receptor 2 (CB2), which lends a hand in immune system communication.

Rodent studies show that delta-8 also boosts a particular chemical in the brain that plays a role in learning and memory. That chemical is the neurotransmitter acetylcholine. Deficiencies in acetylcholine are thought to contribute to Alzheimer’s disease and other memory and cognitive problems.

Potential benefits of delta-8-THC

Delta 8 THC 2 Have You Heard Of Delta 8 THC, The Other Psychoactive Cannabinoid?
Unfortunately, there is not much information available on the potential benefits of delta-8-THC itself. Yet, since this molecule is so closely related to THC, it can be assumed that it has some very similar effects.

In fact, according to the U.S. National Cancer Institute, early research on delta-8-THC has shown that the chemical may have several beneficial effects. These include:

  • Anti-anxiety
  • Appetite-stimulation
  • Pain relief
  • Neuroprotection

Researchers have also looked into the benefits of non-psychoactive derivatives of this molecule. This shows that the compound may be useful for the potential creation of new pharmaceutical drugs.

Some delta-8-THC derivatives, researchers speculate, may be helpful in conditions asthma, systemic anaphylaxis, and septic shock. Others are being studied for interstitial cystitis, as well as for inflammation and pain-relieving effects. Unlike delta-8-THC, many derivatives are thought to be non-psychoactive.

1. Nausea and vomiting

Delta 8 THC 3 Have You Heard Of Delta 8 THC, The Other Psychoactive Cannabinoid?
Some of the most promising research on delta-8-THC itself is in regards to the cannabinoid’s anti-emetic properties. Anti-emetic is a softer term for anti-vomiting.

A 1995 study conducted by Shaare Zedek Hospital, Bikur Holim Hospital, and Hebrew University in Jerusalem gave delta-8-THC to 8 children with cancer. One of the study authors was Dr. Raphael Mechoulam, the man who lead the team that first discovered THC.

The children suffered from nausea and vomiting related to chemotherapy. Delta-8-THC successfully eased vomiting in all cases.

Interestingly, the study authors mentioned that delta-8-THC may be given to children in higher doses than to adults, as children are seemingly less susceptible to the anxiety-inducing effects of psychoactive THC and its relatives. In this study, children in the age range of 3 to 13 years old did not show psychoactive effects with the cannabinoid.

Already, two US patents have been awarded involving delta-8-THC for the treatment of nausea and vomiting. The both went to Indevus Pharmaceuticals, Inc, who sought exclusive rights to a delta-8-derivative for this purpose.

2. Appetite stimulation

Delta 8 THC 4 Have You Heard Of Delta 8 THC, The Other Psychoactive Cannabinoid?
Like traditional THC, delta-8-THC may also be helpful for increasing appetite. A 2004 study in rodents showed that animals treated with very low doses of delta-8-THC ate more after weight loss. Interestingly, delta-8-THC seemed to make the mice more hungry than the traditional stuff.

Coupled with the fact that delta-8-THC eases nausea and vomiting, this cannabis compound is perhaps another worthwhile future treatment for ailments like chemotherapy-induced nausea, vomiting, and weight loss.

Should further investigations of the analgesic qualities of this compound pan out, delta-8-THC may one day be another valuable cannabis medicine.

Where do I find delta-8-THC?

Delta 8 THC hero Have You Heard Of Delta 8 THC, The Other Psychoactive Cannabinoid?
Unfortunately for patients, there aren’t any high delta-8 strains out there to try. One of the best ways to find delta-8-THC is by simply encouraging plants to produce more of the cannabinoid. To do this, they need a happy and nutrient-rich life. At least, according to a study entitled “Seasonal Fluctuations of Cannabis Content In Kansas Marijuana.”

The study was published in 1975 and it found that found that levels of delta-8-THC are more varied later on in the growing season.

The study authors, R. P. Latta and B. J. Eaton, also found diminishing levels of iron and copper in cannabis plants was correlated with a lower production of delta-8-THC. Healthy plants with long roots and some weight were more likely to have higher levels of the cannabinoid.

High levels of magnesium and iron in leaves were associated with greater delta-8-THC production and overcrowding the cannabis plants was thought to limit levels of the cannabinoid.

While information is limited, this old study suggests that keeping plants healthy and nourished can encourage delta-8-THC production. Adding trace minerals to soil or potentially supplementing with magnesium in early to mid flowering may give plants the nutrients boost they need to produce more cannabinoids.

Adding trace minerals to soil or potentially supplementing with magnesium in early to mid flowering may give plants the nutrients boost they need to produce more cannabinoids. Using organic compost teas and ensuring that the soil remains in an optimal p.H. for nutrient absorption (5.5 to 6.5) may also help.

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Global View: How Legalizing Drugs Could Strengthen Democracy Worldwide - The Cannabis Reporter https://www.thecannabisreporter.com/legalizing-drugs-strengthen-democracy/ https://www.thecannabisreporter.com/legalizing-drugs-strengthen-democracy/#respond Tue, 13 Jun 2017 19:15:16 +0000 https://www.thecannabisreporter.com/?p=35578 Unique perspective from former prosecutor, Dr. Inge Fryklund, on how legalizing drugs could solve drug problems and end the Afghan War.

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The UN Office of Drug Control (UNODC) has thoroughly documented the violence, crime, and corruption linked with the worldwide heroin and opium trade. The U.S. news media report every day on the mayhem and corruption of government officials caused by the drug wars in Mexico, Colombia, and other points south of our border. In Afghanistan, the Taliban tax the opium trade and protect poppy farmers from eradication, fueling the insurgency and our 11-year war. Legalizing drugs in the U.S. could mitigate these problems and help end the war.

How does legalizing drugs in the U.S. solve drug problems worldwide?

These problems are all consequences of drug prohibition, not of the drugs themselves. In legal terms, drugs are malum prohibitum (wrong because prohibited by law) rather than malum in se (inherently wrong, such as theft or murder). During the U.S. experiment with Prohibition (1920-1933), alcohol was malum prohibitum; as soon as it was legalized, it again became a normal regulated, traded, and taxed consumer product.

We need to rethink our prohibition of drugs. What problem are we trying to solve by making drugs illegal? Have we chosen the most effective and affordable solution? Are the collateral consequences worth it?

We should start with the premise that neither demand for drugs nor the drugs themselves can be eliminated. UNODC estimates the ultimate street value of drugs originating in southern Afghanistan, primarily Helmand and Kandahar, as $68 billion. Where there is demand, there will be supply. If Afghan supplies were reduced, production would simply move elsewhere—as it did when it moved into Afghanistan in the 1980s after being pushed out of Southeast Asia’s Golden Triangle.

Prohibition of Alcohol

The American experience of Prohibition is instructive.

The U.S. ban on alcohol served primarily to corrupt public officials and endanger the public. Supplying the unabated demand for alcohol required traffickers to pay bribes to police and politicians. As prices increased as a result, cutting quality was one way to keep the retail price down, which resulted in deaths from adulterated products. Moreover, the rise of violent, organized crime during this period—required to move the product and handle disputes within the trade—created criminal organizations that endure to this day.

The Prohibition experiment was relatively short-lived. Part of the impetus for repeal was that Prohibition was not having the intended effect of cutting either alcohol use or the social problems resulting from its abuse (the potential for alcohol tax revenues in the midst of the Great Depression was another factor). Whatever successes the experiment had were outweighed by the costs in corruption and violence, not to mention widespread public cynicism and hypocrisy.

Most importantly, the substantial and unanticipated costs of Prohibition were borne almost entirely by the United States. It was our own police and elected officials who were corrupted. It was our own cities afflicted by the criminal patronage networks battling over turf. We never attempted to force other countries to make the trade in alcohol illegal or participate in our war on alcohol.

The day after Prohibition was repealed, beer distributors no longer had to turn to the Mafia for enforcement of their franchise agreements. They took their disputes to court. The collateral violence largely stopped, and corrupt politicians and police suddenly lost a source of income. Product quality could be standardized. States could make individual decisions about regulating and taxing alcohol.

Of course, the social problems—particularly family violence—that were the ostensible reason for Prohibition continued, as they do to this day. My own experience as a prosecutor in Domestic Violence Court in Chicago in the 1980s is illustrative. If it hadn’t been for alcohol-related crimes, the court could have been closed. Alcohol had adverse effects on families that many other drugs did not have.

But by 1933, we had come to the realization that prohibition was an ineffective way to address abuse and indeed sidelined attempts to address alcoholism and family violence. There is still no simple solution to these problems, but we understood then that any response must directly address the problem. We as a society have come to terms with the inescapable downsides of a product that the public insists on having but that is subject to abuse. We have struck a balance since realizing that criminalizing the trade in alcohol only made everything worse.

Exporting the Problem

Federal statute criminalized narcotics beginning in 1914. There was no nationwide public advocacy campaign as there was leading up to Prohibition. Legislation seems to have been driven primarily by racial fears—of “cocaine-crazed Negroes” raping white women and “Chinamen” in California both using opium and seducing white women into becoming opium addicts. Perhaps there was political value in coming out against the evil of drug use by disfavored groups when it seemed costless to do so.

But we now know a great deal about the worldwide costs in violence, crime, and corruption of making drugs illegal. If the downsides of our drug policy are now so clear, why haven’t drugs (opium and heroin as well as marijuana) been legalized? Why is the calculation different from that made vis a vis ending Prohibition?

After spending more than four years in Afghanistan and seeing first-hand the impact of our drug policies—consequences most Americans never see—I have come to the conclusion that we persist on this course primarily because the costs of our drug policies are borne by other countries, not by us. In contrast with our experience under Prohibition, the corruption of American police and politicians by the drug trade is a relatively minor problem. Demand within the United States is just not high enough to necessitate much bribery.

The serious corruption is instead all on the production end, and this we have succeeded in outsourcing to foreign countries. Our war on drugs is fought on the territories of countries such as Colombia, Honduras, and Mexico. The headless bodies in Mexico barely make the inside pages of American newspapers (imagine if dozens of mutilated bodies were dumped in suburban Maryland). We have requisitioned foreign turf for our war on drugs. Citizens of these countries have no voice in the matter. Their leaders’ acquiescence to U.S. policies undercuts electoral accountability, and corruption of their police and courts undermines the rule of law. We have compromised democracy in our own hemisphere.

In Afghanistan, we have failed to connect the dots between drugs and corruption. At the July 2012 donors’ conference in Tokyo, donor after donor urged President Karzai to combat corruption. However, as long as we insist on the illegality of poppy, we are making a demand that cannot possibly be met.

A country that supplies 80-90 percent of the world’s demand for poppy products must necessarily be corrupt. To move the heroin, opium, and marijuana from field to market, officials and police can demand payment to look the other way (or engage in the trade themselves). The import of chemicals for processing requires the cooperation of customs and border police. Even the poppy eradication process itself has been corrupted, as officials target the fields of rivals while protecting their own. And any eradication in one area inevitably pushes production to another, simply pushing a bubble around in a balloon.

Afghan citizens are well aware of the suitcases full of dollars that leave Kabul Airport every day for Dubai. While kickbacks from development and military contracts are undoubtedly involved, drug profits in particular have to be moved out of the country. In Helmand Province, district chief of police positions are reportedly purchased for sums as high as $150,000 (and that is only the initial payment, not the yearly “rent”), and the chief expects to recoup his investment. District governors, appointed by the president, are merely shifted in musical-chairs fashion around the province when citizens or the U.S. military complains about corruption.

The Karzai government has also chosen not to implement those provisions of the 2004 Afghan constitution that call for the election of mayors and district and city councils. Instead, these councils do not exist, and all local officials report to the president. One can only imagine that all these officials are in place for a reason. For example, the mayor of Kandahar, a city of 800,000, is a presidential appointee, not answerable to local citizens. As a result, prior to his assassination in 2011, the president’s brother, Ahmed Wali Karzai, had a free hand in managing affairs in Kandahar province. As in Latin America, democratic accountability is the loser. The money at stake is so overwhelming that honest and accountable government cannot be implemented without changing the drug nexus. The incentives are just too strong.

The “L” Word

If opium and heroin (as well as marijuana) were legalized, what would happen? Corrupt Afghan officials would suddenly lose a source of income, as poppy is illegal in Afghanistan primarily at U.S. insistence. The Taliban would be unable to extract protection money from farmers, or tax the drug trade. The war might wind down to a speedy conclusion, and Afghanistan could fund its own development and security forces out of sales of a legal commodity. Latin American democracy too would undoubtedly be strengthened and violence would decrease.

The U.S. government could save all the money it now spends on the DEA, interdiction, and drug prosecutions. States could make their own decisions about drugs. Local police and sheriffs could quit chasing after pot growers (who could now standardize and advertise product quality and potency), and devote scarce public safety budgets to the crimes that the average citizen prioritizes. State prisons that are overwhelmed with drug offenders could downsize. Of course, the entire anti-drug enterprise of U.S. officials and government contractors, greased by U.S. security assistance to drug producer nations, would drastically downsize too—and so the anti-drug lobby seeking to preserve its livelihood would undoubtedly be a political force in opposition. Likewise the manufacturers of medicinal morphine who have a monopoly on licensed poppy from India.

On the demand side of the equation, prices might well drop as the costs of paying protection were eliminated. It’s possible that usage would increase, but users don’t seem to have much difficulty obtaining supplies right now. With all the resources freed from fighting an unwinnable war against drugs, we could attend to the social problems that facilitate certain kinds of drug use (heroin use being primarily a lower-class phenomenon) and result from substance abuse. There are many options to explore once the problem is defined honestly and resources are available for experimentation.

Even if the middle class doesn’t care what happens to the lower class, the costs of prosecution and incarceration are a direct drain on the public purse, and an indirect drain as imprisonment itself causes family disruption and disintegration. Under a legalization regime, we would no longer have so many poorly educated young men with drug convictions rendered ineligible for future legitimate employment. Curtailed voting rights for those with felony convictions also means that individuals affected by drug laws have had no voice in changing them—a fundamental requirement of a democracy. Citizens in the 1930s could vote their interest in repealing Prohibition. These rights must be restored.

The immediate response to potential drug legalization is usually, “Why do you want our children hooked on drugs?!” (The rationales of 1914 are no longer mentioned.) Remember, however, that those campaigning for repeal of Prohibition did not say, “We’re in favor of alcohol-induced family violence.” Or, “Let’s have more alcohol-related carnage on the highways.” People were quite aware of the problems—which continued during Prohibition as before and since. We as a society concluded in 1933, however, that prohibition was an ineffective way of dealing with this particular societal ill, and that illegality created second- and third-order effects that were far worse than the evil that Prohibition was supposed to address.

As with alcohol, we need to be honest with ourselves about the costs and benefits of our social policies and recognize that not all problems have comprehensive or entirely satisfactory solutions. We can only do our best to make decisions that take into consideration all of the costs and benefits of our choices and not pretend that moral crusades are costless. We need to address honestly the morality of foisting upon other countries the violence, corruption, and damage to democracy caused by U.S. drug policies and driven by U.S. demand.

Legalizing drugs is the only solution to the problem of Afghan and Latin American violence and corruption—and the less obvious but more insidious problems of poverty, over-incarceration, and the misallocation of public resources within the United States. Only legalization can change the worldwide nexus of drugs and criminality.

About the Author

Inge Frykland

Foreign Policy In Focus contributor Inge Fryklund, JD, PhD, was a Chicago prosecutor during the 1980s. From 2004 to 2012, she spent more than four years in Afghanistan, working with the legal system and with national, provincial, and municipal governments. She is recently returned from Helmand Province, the heart of opium poppy production. Today, she advocates for legalization as part of Law Enforcement Action Partnership, an organization formerly known as Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP).

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Next on the Agenda: Florida Cannabis Policy Unfolds… Again - The Cannabis Reporter https://www.thecannabisreporter.com/florida-cannabis-policy/ https://www.thecannabisreporter.com/florida-cannabis-policy/#respond Sat, 10 Jun 2017 00:03:44 +0000 https://www.thecannabisreporter.com/?p=35063 Interview with former prosecutor Demitri Downing about the regulatory framework of the most recent incarnation of Florida cannabis policy

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About This Episode

In last year’s election, Florida finally joined the ranks of states now allowing legal access to marijuana for medical use — again. Considering the long, bumpy road toward normalizing Florida cannabis policy, the passage of Amendment 2 was a huge victory.

What most people don’t know is that Florida was actually one of the first states to make marijuana legal out of medical necessity – thanks to a 1976 ruling that set a precedent for use of medical marijuana for treating Glaucoma. That ruling led to the Therapeutic Research Act, which allowed for a Federal research program to provide a handful of patients with marijuana. Florida became the second to join the program in 1978, following New Mexico. Of 33 other states that followed suit, Florida had the best legal protections for patients due the number of drug convictions overturned with a medical defense.

All of that changed when George H.W. Bush made the War On Drugs a priority. As a result, the program stopped accepting new patients in 1992. As of 1999, the medical necessity defense was no longer enough to prevent two AIDS patients from being convicted and jailed for possession of marijuana. Despite winning a district appeal to overturn their conviction, a Supreme Court judge ruled that the “Medical Necessity” defense sends the wrong message about the drug. Florida residents were on notice that they could no longer use a defense of medical necessity to protect them from conviction for possessing a controlled substance.

In November last year, Florida voters finally had their say with the passage of Amendment 2. Despite the victory, the battle to normalize Florida cannabis policy is far from over as our returning guest, Demitri Downing explains. But first, Dr. Bryan Doner has our Medical Marijuana Minute.

About Our Guests

Demitri Downing

Demitri Downing is a former prosecutor who has played a leading role in the development of medical marijuana industry policy since August 8, 2012. Through his company PolicyQuake , he has lobbied in multiple states for pro-industry changes in the law and has helped to develop numerous dispensaries and cultivations operations. He started the Marijuana Industry Trade Association (MITA) a nationwide Cannabis Conference & Expo franchise, which began as the Southwest Cannabis Conference and Expo in California and has expanded to multiple states.

Acknowledgements

If not for the generosity of our supporters, we wouldn’t be here! We’d first like to thank our sponsors at Hemp Meds and Healthtera. We’d also like to thank our talented team at Star Worldwide Networks, Erik Godal, the composer of our theme “Evergreen,” Dr. Bryan Doner, our Medical Marijuana Minute contributor, XRQK Radio Network for broadcasting our show around the country, and Compassionate Certification Centers for helping us spread the word. We are grateful!

Listen Now

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UK Study: Combined with Chemotherapy, Cannabinoids Kill Leukemia Cells - The Cannabis Reporter https://www.thecannabisreporter.com/cannabinoids-kill-leukemia/ https://www.thecannabisreporter.com/cannabinoids-kill-leukemia/#respond Thu, 08 Jun 2017 09:08:44 +0000 https://www.thecannabisreporter.com/?p=35005 St George's, University of London Department of Oncology shows evidence that cannabinoids kill leukemia cells when combined with chemotherapy.

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Researchers at St George’s, University of London Department of Oncology, Institute for Infection and Immunity released findings of their study on the effects of phytocannabinoids used in combination with chemotherapy on leukemia cells with promising results. The groundbreaking study shows evidence that cannabinoids kill leukemia cells when combined with chemotherapy.

In a recent episode of The Cannabis Reporter Radio Show, cancer patient advocate Mara Gordon discussed the growing network of medical practitioners, cultivators and formulators who are independently working with cancer patients to help them determine the best formulations and doses for their conditions. According to Gordon, there is plenty of anecdotal evidence that, combined with chemotherapy, cannabis can not only help patients stem the side effects of treatment, it can also enhance the body’s own natural defenses. Other anecdotal evidence that cannabis is helping mesotheleoma patients is reported by Mesothelioma.Net and a host of other cancer patient forums.

Lab confirmation: cannabinoids kill leukemia

The St. George’s study is the first to confirm that conventional cancer treatments, when combined with cannabinoids, kill leukemia cells more effectively. “Researchers looked at cancer cells in the laboratory, trying different combinations of cannabinoids against leukaemia cells. They tested whether existing chemotherapy treatments worked effectively alongside the cannabinoids, and whether using the drugs in a different order had an effect.”

In an article by St. George’s University of London, Dr Wai Liu, the leader of the study said: “We have shown for the first time that the order in which cannabinoids and chemotherapy are used is crucial in determining the overall effectiveness of this treatment.”

Due to federal limitations to conducting studies on cannabis, which is still considered to be a DEA Schedule One drug, clinical studies examining cannabinoid’s impact on cancer were limited to those conducted in laboratories. One laboratory study with mice found that cannabinoids given along with chemotherapy may make the traditional cancer treatment more effective. Another study showed that cannabinoids could slow and stop tumor growth in mice and rats. Another study conducted by the Shanghai Institute of Hematology found that cannabinoid receptor 2 suppresses leukocyte inflammatory migration. In yet another study, cannabinoids killed breast cancer cells while having no effect on healthy cells in a laboratory cell culture.

The St. George’s study, which is now available for sale at Spandidos Publications, was originally published by International Journal of Oncology in the July 2017 issue.

 

 

Abstract

Abstract: Anticancer effects of phytocannabinoids used with chemotherapy in leukaemia cells can be improved by altering the sequence of their administration

Phytocannabinoids possess anticancer activity when used alone, and a number have also been shown to combine favourably with each other in vitro in leukaemia cells to generate improved activity. We have investigated the effect of pairing cannabinoids and assessed their anticancer activity in cell line models. Those most effective were then used with the common anti-leukaemia drugs cytarabine and vincristine, and the effects of this combination therapy on cell death studied in vitro. Results show a number of cannabinoids could be paired together to generate an effect superior to that achieved if the components were used individually. For example, in HL60 cells, the IC50 values at 48 h for cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) when used alone were 8 and 13 µM, respectively; however, if used together, it was 4 µM. Median-effect analysis confirmed the benefit of using cannabinoids in pairs, with calculated combination indices being <1 in a number of cases. The most efficacious cannabinoid-pairs subsequently synergised further when combined with the chemotherapy agents, and were also able to sensitise leukaemia cells to their cytotoxic effects. The sequence of administration of these drugs was important though; using cannabinoids after chemotherapy resulted in greater induction of apoptosis, whilst this was the opposite when the schedule of administration was reversed. Our results suggest that when certain cannabinoids are paired together, the resulting product can be combined synergistically with common anti-leukaemia drugs allowing the dose of the cytotoxic agents to be dramatically reduced yet still remain efficacious. Nevertheless, the sequence of drug administration is crucial to the success of these triple combinations and should be considered when planning such treatments.

 

Citation: Scott, K.A., Dalgleish, A.G., & Liu, W.M. (2017). Anticancer effects of phytocannabinoids used with chemotherapy in leukaemia cells can be improved by altering the sequence of their administration. International Journal of Oncology, 51, 369-377. https://doi.org/10.3892/ijo.2017.4022

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Fed appeals court quashes bids to unravel marijuana laws in CO - The Cannabis Reporter https://www.thecannabisreporter.com/fed-appeals-court-quashes-bids-to-unravel-marijuana-laws/ https://www.thecannabisreporter.com/fed-appeals-court-quashes-bids-to-unravel-marijuana-laws/#respond Wed, 07 Jun 2017 22:09:02 +0000 https://www.thecannabisreporter.com/?p=34920 The Cannabist: 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver upheld lower courts’ dismissals of several cases seeking to overturn marijuana laws in CO.

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A three-judge panel for the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver on Wednesday largely upheld lower courts’ dismissals of several cases seeking to overturn major parts of Colorado’s marijuana laws, including efforts by two neighboring states.

The appeals court panel did, however, reverse a district court decision against a Pueblo-area ranch that sued a neighboring cultivation facility, claiming noxious odors and diminished property values. In remanding that case to district court, the judges left the door open for something that legal experts and case attorneys say could rattle the legal marijuana industry: that private-property owners could potentially bring federal racketeering claims against neighboring marijuana grows and dispensaries.

“This is basically a road map for people who own property that is near (a marijuana facility) … for how to bring a federal suit to get relief,” said Brian W. Barnes, an attorney for plaintiff Safe Streets Alliance, a Washington, D.C.-based anti-drug and anti-crime organization that took up the cause of Michael P. Reilly and Phillis Windy Hope Reilly, the owners of the Pueblo ranch.

The Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act, frequently implemented in cases to combat organized crime and white-collar crime, also allows for private individuals to sue “racketeers” who allegedly damage a business or property.

The judges ruled that private landowners, law enforcement officers and neighboring states that claimed harm from cannabis legalization cannot use the federal Controlled Substances Act to challenge Colorado’s legal recreational marijuana regime. The judges also closed the door on Nebraska and Oklahoma’s pushes to intervene in the case after their similarly directed complaints to the U.S. Supreme Court were denied a hearing.

Despite the ruling against private citizens claiming there is federal preemption of state law, Barnes called Wednesday’s ruling a “huge victory” for his clients as well as people opposed to the marijuana industry in Colorado. If successful in district court, his clients could be eligible to receive up to three times the claimed financial damages, have attorneys’ fees reimbursed, and have the court shut down the offending operation, he said.

In their 90-page opinion, the judges did appear to express caution and set boundaries on any potential future claims, stating:

We are not suggesting that every private citizen purportedly aggrieved by another person, a group, or an enterprise that is manufacturing, distributing, selling, or using marijuana may pursue a claim under RICO. Nor are we implying that every person tangentially injured in his business or property by such activities has a viable RICO claim. Rather, we hold only that the Reillys alleged sufficient facts to plausibly establish the requisite elements of their claims against the Marijuana Growers here. The Reillys therefore must be permitted to attempt to prove their RICO claims.

Even with that bit of couching, the court’s ruling could provide an opening for neighbors to sue for damages and seek financial relief, said Christopher Jackson, a Denver-based attorney for the Sherman & Howard firm who is not a party to the case.

“The court is limiting its application, but I still think that you’re going to see a ton more lawsuits citing this case,” he said.

Matthew W. Buck, an attorney representing the marijuana growers sued by the ranch, said via email that the Reillys “will have a difficult time proving that marijuana diminished their property value, or any property in Colorado,” claiming that the presence of the facility has increased surrounding property values. Buck also argued that the Reillys’ land is agricultural, and thus smells like agricultural processes, adding that “my clients did not complain when odors of manure wafted onto their delicious marijuana crop.”

“We will vigorously fight this case should the Reillys … choose to pursue it in the District of Colorado,” Buck wrote. “We found the claims not meritorious initially, the District Court agreed, and it will be up to a jury of Colorado voters to see whether they think D.C. special interest groups should meddle in Colorado citizens’ right to self-govern.”

The appeals raised four principal disputes that stemmed from the conflict between Colorado’s allowance of recreational marijuana and the federal Controlled Substances Act, which holds that marijuana possession, manufacturing, sale and cultivation are illegal.

The appellate judges, however, indicated that private landowners could bring RICO claims against neighboring marijuana grows. The court reversed, in part, the dismissal of those claims and remanded them to the lower court for further proceedings.

Colorado Marijuana Lawsuit – 10th Circuit Court of Appeals

Colorado Marijuana Lawsuit – 10th Circuit Court of Appeals (PDF)

Colorado Marijuana Lawsuit – 10th Circuit Court of Appeals (Text)

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CURE Pharmaceuticals, CannaKids and Technion Israel Institute of Technology to fight childhood cancer - The Cannabis Reporter https://www.thecannabisreporter.com/34272-2/ https://www.thecannabisreporter.com/34272-2/#respond Thu, 01 Jun 2017 18:13:23 +0000 https://www.thecannabisreporter.com/?p=34272 Cure Pharmaceuticals and CannaKids partner with Technion Research and Development Foundation Ltd. to research cannabinoids for cancer.

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Oxnard, CA – (May 31, 2017) – CURE Pharmaceutical (OTCQB: CURR), (“CURE”), a leading disruptive drug delivery technology and pharmaceutical cannabinoid molecule development company, announced today that the Cure and the CannaKids partnership has entered into a strategic research collaboration with Technion Research and Development Foundation Ltd., wholly-owned subsidiary of the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology, in order to research how different cannabinoid compounds within cannabis strains can be used to treat various subtypes of cancer.

Researchers from CURE’s Pharmaceutical Cannabinoid Division and Technion’s Laboratory of Cancer Biology and Cannabinoid Research will work together to research and identify how varying cannabinoid compounds within cannabis strains can affect various cancer subtypes. The results of the research will be used to predict how to match a cancer subtype with an effective cannabis extract in order to optimize treatment efficacy.

“When I first traveled to Israel to meet Professor Meiri and his team at Technion in search for more help for my own daughter’s brain tumor, I was elated to find groundbreaking research already taking place in a federally legal environment,” stated Tracy Ryan, CEO of CannaKids. “It is with great pride that we announce this alignment between CannaKids, CURE and Technion as we work towards ushering in a new line of cannabinoid therapies to the pharmaceutical marketplace for those suffering from both adult and pediatric cancers. We are in a brave new world of plant based cannabinoid medicines, and it is an honor to be working alongside such brilliant minds.”

“This research partnership with Technion, which has one of the leading cannabis laboratories in the world, is a crucial step in our goal to bring new cancer-fighting cannabinoid molecules to market,” said Rob Davidson, CEO of CURE. “In this work the Technion team aims to clarify the antitumor effects of phytocannabinoids and terpenes on various cancer driving mutations and pathways, as well as further elucidating the mechanism of the cannabinoid-mediated antitumor effects. This will allow not only the identification of new drug candidates but also will create the ability to optimize cannabis treatment options for patients. Together these options further efforts toward the creation of personalized medicine.”

Technion’s lab group recently discovered two new pathways that have been activated by Cannabis extracts in cancer cells.

Technion is looking forward to this partnership and working with CURE to continue uncovering the vast therapeutic potential of the cannabinoids found in various Cannabis species. Accumulating evidence indicates that cannabinoids have antitumor effects, as several studies have demonstrated the use of cannabinoids in being able to regress different cancer types. This research collaboration with CURE will help the company with their goal of determining which cannabis strains might be used to tackle different cancer cells and what cannabinoid compounds within the plant are responsible for the ability to kill these cells.

Earlier this month, CURE announced its formal entrance into the pharmaceutical cannabis sector, which in the U.S. is estimated to reach over $23 billion by 2020, according to ArcView Market Research. CURE’s goal is to bring new cannabinoid molecules to the market through the FDA regulatory process, while utilizing the company’s proprietary delivery technologies to increase efficacy, as well as target unmet needs in traditional pharmaceutical markets that could be disrupted by cannabinoid-based options.

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