Combined Administration of Opioids and Cannabinoids Safe and Effective in Animal Model


SAN ANTONIO, TX — The co-administration of morphine and synthetic cannabinoids is efficacious and is not associated with significant changes in either behavior or cognition, according to animal trial data presented at the annual meeting of the American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics.

Investigators from the University of Texas Health Science Center assessed the safety and efficacy of the combined administration of morphine and synthetic THC in a group of rhesus monkeys. Researchers reported a lack of evidence that the co-administration of the two drugs was associated with amplified adverse effects on either impulsivity or memory.

“These data provide additional evidence supporting the notion that opioid-cannabinoid mixtures that are effective for treating pain do not have greater, and in some cases have less, adverse effects compared with larger doses of each drug alone,” the study’s lead author said. “Combining opioid receptor agonists with drugs that relieve pain through actions at non-opioid mechanisms (for example, cannabinoid receptors) could be a useful strategy for reducing the dose of opioid needed to achieve pain relief.”

Clinical data published last year by Columbia University researchers reported that the co-administration of inhaled cannabis and sub-therapeutic doses of oxycodone produces enhanced analgesic effects in human subjects. Authors stated that the results highlighted “the opioid-sparing effects of cannabis.”

Their findings were similar to those of a 2011 clinical trial determining that vaporized cannabis interacts synergistically with opioids to induce pain relief and therefore “may allow for opioid treatment at lower doses with fewer side effects.”

In jurisdictions where marijuana is legally available, patients frequently acknowledge reducing their use of conventional medications, specifically opioids and benzodiazepines, after initiating cannabis therapy.

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Maine Regulators Moving Forward With Rules to Govern Retail Marijuana Sales


After multiple delays, regulators in Maine are finally moving forward with draft regulations to implement the state’s 2016 voter-approved initiative legalizing the commercial production and retail sale of marijuana.

Regulators are now deliberating over a 73-page draft of rules governing the adult use marijuana market. The rules will not be finalized until regulators receive input from the public and they are approved by a majority of lawmakers.

Under the proposed rules, commercial licenses will only be granted initially to state residents. Those with a felony drug conviction within the past ten years will be ineligible for a license.

The proposed regulations also impose limits with regard to THC content and the appearance of cannabis-infused edible products.

Retailers will not be permitted to sell customers more than 2.5 ounces of usable marijuana and/or five grams of concentrate in a single day.

Retailers will need to first receive local approval prior to applying for a state operators license.

Maine voters initially approved the legalization of cannabis sales in November 2016, but lawmakers – led by former Republican Gov. Paul LePage – have repeatedly taken steps to delay the law’s implementation.

Newly elected Gov. Janet Mills (D) is on record stating that lawmakers “must follow the will of the people [and] implement the [voter-initiated marijuana] law.”

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Texas Marijuana Decriminalization Bill to be Considered on House Floor


AUSTIN, TX — On Thursday, April 25, members of the Texas House of Representatives are scheduled to consider a marijuana decriminalization bill.

House Bill 63 would reduce penalties for the possession of up to one ounce of marijuana from a class B misdemeanor, punishable by a maximum fine of $2,000 and up to 180 days in jail, to a civil offense punishable by a $250 fine only.

The bill was approved by the House Criminal Jurisprudence Committee last month by a 5-2 vote.

Thursday will be the first time in decades that marijuana decriminalization will be discussed on the House Floor.

It is essential to continue to build momentum behind this important piece of legislation so that minor marijuana possession offenders, many of them young people, are no longer saddled with a criminal record and the lifelong penalties and stigma associated with it.

Click here to send a message to your Texas state representatives now in support of decriminalization, and urge them to co-author HB 63

The consideration of HB 63 on the House floor comes just days after the state’s House of Representatives approved an industrial hemp production bill, and after a separate House committee approved a bill to expand access to medical cannabis for Texas patients.

Governor Greg Abbott (R) has expressed his opposition to legalizing adult use marijuana, but has also stated that he is open to reducing low-level marijuana possession penalties.

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Wednesday, July 31, 2019 Headlines | Marijuana Today Daily News


A red frozen cocktail is topped with a mint leaf and raspberry.

Marijuana Today Daily Headlines
Wednesday, July 31, 2019 | Curated by host Shea Gunther

// Drink up stoners: Big Alcohol’s pursuit to make weed beverages (Verge)

// DEA ordered to explain delay in medical marijuana research application processing (Marijuana Business Daily)

// After Legalizing Marijuana, Colorado Saw ‘Significant Decrease’ In Opioid Prescriptions, Study Finds (Marijuana Moment)


These headlines are brought to you by Curaleaf, one of the leading vertically-integrated cannabis operators in the U.S. With legal medical marijuana dispensaries, cultivation sites, and processing facilities all over the United States, Curaleaf has served more than 100,000 medical cannabis patients and looks forward to helping many more long into the future. Swing over to Curaleaf.com to learn more about this very cool company!


// Pennsylvania regulators strip cultivator of medical cannabis license (Marijuana Business Daily)

// Melissa Etheridge Launches Marijuana Biz In Santa Cruz County (Santa Cruz Patch)

// Chart: Cannabis investors shift from loan financing to equity investment (Marijuana Business Daily)

// More than 1,800 register for Los Angeles social equity cannabis business eligibility (Marijuana Business Daily)

// This Fall Fair in BC Has a ‘Cannabis’ Category- and the Mayor’s Judging (Leafly)

// Medical Cannabis Could Reach Louisiana Pharmacies Next Week (Leafly (AP))

// Florida Activists Clear First Hurdle To Put Marijuana Legalization On State’s 2020 Ballot (Marijuana Moment)


Check out our other projects:
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North Dakota Governor Signs Medical Marijuana Expansion Laws


North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum (R)

BISMARK, ND — North Dakota‘s Republican Governor Doug Burgum signed legislation on Wednesday amending and expanding the state’s nascent medical cannabis access program.

House Bill 1283 permits physician assistants to recommend cannabis to qualified patients. House Bill 1417 permits patients with cancer to possess enhanced amounts of cannabis flower (up to six ounces) when explicitly authorized by a recommending health care provider. House Bill 1519 significantly expands the pool of patients eligible for medical cannabis therapy to include those diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder, migraine, anorexia, and Tourette Syndrome, among other debilitating conditions.

Though approved by voters in November 2016, the state’s medical cannabis access program is not yet fully operational. A single dispensary opened in Fargo in March, and additional licensed facilities are anticipated to open later this summer.

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Jefferson County Police to Cite, Rather than Prosecute, Minor Marijuana Violators


The Jefferson County Courthouse in Birmingham, Alabama (Wikimedia Commons)

BIRMINGHAM, AL — A spokesperson for the Jefferson County (population: 658,000) Sheriff’s Office on Monday announced that local law enforcement will begin citing, rather than arresting, low-level marijuana offenders.

Under the new policy, police will issue a summons to those who possess personal amounts of marijuana or cannabis-related paraphernalia. Offenders will no longer be arrested or booked.

Those cited and released will still have to either pay a fine or appear in court at a later date. Those with prior cannabis violations will still be eligible to receive a summons.

Under state law, marijuana possession is classified as a criminal misdemeanor, punishable by up to one-year in jail and a $6,000 fine.

Similar cite and release programs are in place in other cities and counties around the country, including in Palm Beach County, Florida and in Harris County (Houston), Texas.

Additional information is available from NORML’s ‘Local Decriminalization‘ report.

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Plant-Derived THC/CBD Extracts Reduce Dementia Symptoms


GENEVA, SWITZERLAND — The daily administration of plant-derived extracts containing a two-to-one ratio of CBD to THC is associated with a reduction in agitation and behavioral problems in patients with severe dementia, according to clinical data published in the journal Medical Cannabis and Cannabinoids.

A team of Swiss investigators assessed the use of cannabis extracts over a two-month period in a group of ten female dementia patients residing in a nursing home facility.

Patients demonstrated reduced levels of agitation, rigidity, and behavioral problems following cannabis treatment. Half of the subjects decreased or ceased their use of other medications.

“An oral cannabis extract with THC/CBD … was well tolerated and greatly improved behavior problems, rigidity, and daily care in severely demented patients,” authors concluded.

In prior clinical trials, the administration of oral synthetic THC capsules (Marinol) is associated with reductions in Alzheimer’s-induced agitation.

Full text of the study, “Prescription of a THC/CBD-based medication to patients with dementia: A pilot study in Geneva,” appears in Medical Cannabis and Cannabinoids.



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Police Search of Passenger’s Personal Property is Unconstitutional


The warrantless search of a passenger’s personal property during a traffic stop is unconstitutional, according to a ruling by the Michigan Supreme Court.

The judgement overturns a 2007 decision that barred passengers from challenging similar searches by members of law enforcement.

Justices unanimously opined that the driver’s voluntary consent to allow the police to search her vehicle did not extend to the passenger’s personal belongings.

They determined: “In this case, defendant had a legitimate expectation of privacy in his backpack. Defendant asserted a clear possessory interest in his backpack by clutching it in his lap, and the officer believed that the backpack belonged to defendant because of the way defendant was holding it. Therefore, although defendant had no (and claimed no) legitimate expectation of privacy in the interior of the driver’s vehicle, he had a legitimate expectation of privacy in his backpack that society is willing to recognize as reasonable.”

Justices concluded, “A passenger’s personal property is not subsumed by the vehicle that carries it for Fourth Amendment purposes.”

The defendant’s backpack held marijuana and methamphetamine. He had already served nearly three years in prison for the offenses prior to this week’s verdict.

The case is People v. Mead.

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CBD Content In Commercial Products Typically Less Than Advertised


(file photo)

VAN NUYS, CA — Third-party lab testing of a variety of commercially available CBD products finds that many contain only trace quantities of cannabidiol, according to an analysis first reported by BusinessInsider.com.

Representatives from CannaSafe Laboratories, a California-based analytical testing company, assessed 20 CBD-infused products, including vape cartridges, beverages, edibles, and skin creams. Only three of the 20 products contained levels of CBD matching the percentages advertised on their label.

Authors of the report also identified the presence of ethylene oxide and other potentially harmful solvents in some products.

The results are consistent with those of previous reports — such as those herehereherehereherehereherehere, and here — which similarly determined that many commercially available CBD-infused products are of variable potency and may contain adulterants.

For more information, please see the NORML fact-sheet FAQs About Cannabidiol.’

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Antioxidant compound from soybeans may prevent marijuana-induced blood vessel damage — ScienceDaily


In laboratory tests, a compound found in soybeans blocked damage to the lining of blood vessels in the heart and circulatory system and may someday provide a way to prevent the cardiovascular side effects of recreational and medical marijuana use, according to preliminary research presented at the American Heart Association’s Basic Cardiovascular Sciences 2019 Scientific Sessions.

Marijuana is the most widely used illicit drug worldwide and is increasingly being made legal for recreational and medicinal purposes. However, there have been studies that link marijuana smoking to an increased risk of heart attack and stroke.

There can also be cardiovascular side effects, including changes in heart rate and blood pressure, when people take FDA-approved medications containing a synthetic version of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) — the main compound in marijuana that gives the sensation of being high.

“These medications are prescribed to reduce the nausea and vomiting induced by chemotherapy and to increase appetite in certain people with acquired immune deficiency syndrome,” said Tzu-Tan “Thomas” Wei, Ph.D., the study’s lead author and assistant professor of pharmacology in the College of Medicine at National Taiwan University in Taipei City. “The goal of our studies is to investigate the mechanisms of marijuana-induced damage and discover new drugs to prevent those side effects.”

The effects of THC occur after it binds to one of two cannabinoid receptors (CB1 and CB2) that are found throughout the brain and body and are also acted on by naturally occurring cannabinoids.

In the current study, the researchers used endothelial cells (like those that line blood vessels) derived from the stem cells of five healthy people. Exposing the cells to THC, they found that:

THC exposure induced inflammation and oxidative stress, which are known to affect the inner linings of blood vessels and are associated with the development of heart disease.

Lab techniques that block access to the CB1 receptor by THC eliminated the effects of THC exposure on endothelial cells.

Treatment with JW-1, an antioxidant compound found in soybeans, eliminated the effects of THC exposure.

In addition, the researchers used a laboratory technique called wire myography to examine the response of mouse arteries to THC, finding that JW-1 blocked THC’s negative effects on the function of the inner lining.

An earlier attempt to gain health benefits from blocking the CB1 receptor proved problematic.

“Previously, a drug that blocked CB1 was approved in Europe for the treatment of obesity, but it had to be withdrawn because of severe psychiatric side effects,” Wei said. “In contrast, as an antioxidant, JW-1 may have neuroprotective effects. Discovering a new way to protect blood vessels without psychiatric side effects would be clinically important with the rapid growth of cannabis use worldwide.”

The researchers are currently extending their research by testing cells derived from regular marijuana users and those who smoke both cigarettes and marijuana. In addition, they are looking at the impact of THC along with the other main component of marijuana, cannabidiol.

“Meanwhile, if you have heart disease, talk to your doctor before you use marijuana or one of the synthetic THC-containing medications,” Wei said. “Marijuana may cause more severe effects on the cardiovascular system in those with pre-existing heart disease.”

Story Source:

Materials provided by American Heart Association. Note: Content may be edited for style and length.



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