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Medical Marijuana

Allow medical marijuana in Florida?

Category: Medical Marijuana | Posted on Fri, April, 19th 2013 by THCFinder
Eighteen states have legalized marijuana for medical purposes. Next year voters in Florida could be faced with the choice of whether to join them.
 
A citizens' campaign to legalize medical marijuana in the Sunshine State got a big boost last month when John Morgan, among Florida's most visible lawyers and prolific political fundraisers, agreed to lead the effort. In one of today's Front Burner columns, Morgan recounts his very personal reasons for stepping up.
 
But today's other columnist, Debi MacIntyre — leader of a Lake County coalition fighting youth substance abuse — argues that there are safer, more medically sound and less abuse-prone alternatives to medical marijuana.
 
Though a recent poll indicated that more than 70 percent of Floridians favored legalizing medical marijuana, proposals to do so in the Legislature have never gotten much traction with members. This year is no exception.
 
Another path to legalization — an amendment to the Florida Constitution — would need signatures on petitions from almost 700,000 voters to secure a spot on the 2014 ballot. Then it would need support from at least 60 percent of voters.
 

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Uses of medical marijuana soon may include PTSD

Category: Medical Marijuana | Posted on Fri, April, 19th 2013 by THCFinder
The Senate passed a bill Thursday that would allow people with post-traumatic stress disorder to get medical marijuana cards, but not all lawmakers were sold on the idea.
 
Senate Bill 281, which passed on a 19-11 vote, is now headed to the House.
 
The issue divided many of the Senate Republicans, some of whom weren’t convinced that medical marijuana would effectively treat the anxiety disorder.
 
While there has been anecdotal evidence about its beneficial effects on post-traumatic stress disorder, there isn’t a consensus about the drug in the medical community.
 
“You know you could sit down with a bottle of Jack Daniels and listen to Charlie Daniels and probably get the same effect,” said Sen. Alan Olsen, R-Canby, a former narcotics investigator.
 
Sen. Jeff Kruse, R-Roseburg, said he voted against the bill because he thinks that marijuana should be treated like any other medicine.
 

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Pharmaceutical Companies Rush To Patent Medical Marijuana

Category: Medical Marijuana | Posted on Wed, April, 17th 2013 by THCFinder
It seems like one of the greatest fears of the medical marijuana community is slowly being realized, as corporations quickly adopt cannabinoids into their vast profile of patented medicines. Leading the charge is GW Pharmaceuticals (1), a UK- based pharmaceutical company who manufacturers Sativex, an outrageously overpriced oral spray that relies on THC and CBD for its medical effects.
 
Although Sativex is not currently available to patients in the U.S., it can be prescribed in Canada, the UK and other European countries, at a price of £175 per bottle. As crazy as it sounds, the only difference between a £175 bottle of Sativex and a $20 bottle of marijuana extract from your local dispensary are the patents that GW Pharma has been all-too-quick to file.
 
Just last month, GW Pharma’s newest patent application (2) was published with the title “Phytocannabinoids in the treatment of cancer.” That’s right, the makers of Sativex are trying to patent the compounds of marijuana for treating all forms of cancer. But is that even allowed?
 
Probably not, since medical marijuana’s cancer-fighting effects have been well known since the 70s, not to mention prominent spokespeople of the movement, such as Rick Simpson, who have provided personal testimonies of marijuana’s ability to cure cancer. As a result, it is unlikely that a patent would be granted on medical marijuana itself or common extracts like hemp oil.
 
Even still, pharmaceutical companies are well aware of the loopholes in patent laws that can easily be exploited by slightly altering a chemical or formula, which is what seems to be the case with GW Pharma. In their most recent patent, all GW Pharma had to do to claim exclusive rights to the cancer-fighting effects of cannabis was to call it a “botanical drug substance”, which they define as a mixture of cannabinoids and non-cannabinoid materials. As a result, GW may just be holding the golden ticket to a cutting-edge cure for cancer, something that has eluded medical research for decades.
 

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California county can protect identities of registered medical marijuana growers

Category: Medical Marijuana | Posted on Tue, April, 16th 2013 by THCFinder
A Northern California county that allowed registered medical marijuana growers to buy permits for up to 99 plants will not have to reveal their identities to federal authorities.
 
US prosecutors dropped their legal demands for growers' names at a hearing Friday in federal court in San Francisco, according to the San Francisco Chronicle newspaper.
 
Mendocino agreed to turn over information about program finances but not "confidential, private medical information of medical marijuana patients, cultivators and activists," said Adam Wolf, a lawyer for the Emerald Growers Association of Redway, Calif.
 
The EGA represents hundreds of growers and supporters in Mendocino and Humboldt counties, the newspaper said.
 
The office of Melinda Haag, the US Attorney for Northern California, declined to comment on the settlement.
 
But Haag said last year that California's medical marijuana program had been "hijacked" by profiteers, according to the Center for Investigative Reporting.
 
Mendocino County ended its 99-plant program in January 2012 after federal authorities threatened to sue under an Obama administration-authorized crackdown on California's medical marijuana industry.
 
The state legalized cultivation and distribution of marijuana for medical purposes in 1996 when voters approved Proposition 215, but left regulation to local communities.
 

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Delaware Considers Reviving Medical Marijuana Dispensary Program

Category: Medical Marijuana | Posted on Mon, April, 15th 2013 by THCFinder
DOVER, DE — As the two-year anniversary of the signing of Delaware’s medical marijuana act approaches in May, state officials look to move forward with the now-halted medical marijuana program.
 
On May 13, 2011, Gov. Jack A. Markell signed legislation to allow state-regulated distribution of medical marijuana in good faith. The federal government had issued a memorandum in 2009 from then-U.S. Attorney General David W. Ogden, which had stated it was not a priority of the federal government to prosecute patients and their caregivers acting “in clear and ambiguous compliance” with state laws.
 
“It was largely based on that guidance,” Gov. Markell said of Senate Bill 17.
 
The act does not allow individuals to grow medical marijuana, but allows a patient with certain qualifying conditions, such as HIV, cancer and multiple sclerosis, to purchase up to six ounces of marijuana from any of the three proposed state-regulated compassion distribution centers.
 
Patients, at least 18 years of age, and caregivers for homebound patients can apply for an ID card which grants protection from arrest.
 

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Human Marijuana Trials Moving Forward To Determine Medical Benefits

Category: Medical Marijuana | Posted on Sun, April, 14th 2013 by THCFinder
Thousands of medical marijuana patients in the United States rely on the drug to alleviate a multitude of symptoms from cachexia to nerve pain; nevertheless, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) still considers it a Schedule I controlled substance that has no accepted medical use.
 
Despite this law-enforcement-agency-approved “analysis,” doctors are conducting their own research. In Israel, the Meir Medical Center is recruiting Crohn’s Disease sufferers for a study on the ability of marijuana to treat the inflammatory bowel disease, which affects 400,000-600,000 North Americans.
 
In San Francisco, for more than five years, doctors at California Pacific Medical Center have been studying the effects of the marijuana compound cannabidiol (CBD) on metastatic cancer cells (i.e., very aggressive tumor cells).  In their recently published large-scale animal trial, brain scans revealed the disruption of tumor cells after CBD was used to switch off a specific gene regulator.
 

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