U.S. Growing Largest Crop of Marijuana for Research in 5 Years


2019-07-15 15:03:00 Business Times


The U.S. government is growing the largest crop of research marijuana in five years, responding to interest in varieties with high levels of THC and CBD. The government is the only source of cannabis for nearly all research in the U.S., while it still considers it illegal and dangerous. Scientists have asked for marijuana that more closely matches what's sold in states that have legalized medical or recreational marijuana, the National Institute on Drug Abuse said in an email Thursday to The Associated Press. The federal agency said it plans to grow 2,000 kilograms (4,409 pounds) this year at the University of Mississippi, which holds the sole federal contract for producing marijuana. That's enough for 5 million joints, although the government provides the marijuana in different forms. The crop will be divided between high THC and high CBD varieties with "recent interest (in CBD) as a potential medicine for a number of medical conditions," NIDA said. The compound THC causes pot's mind-altering effect; CBD doesn't get people high. Last year, a CBD-based drug was approved by federal regulators for two rare seizure disorders and researchers are pursuing research on it for other conditions. Others are focused on THC. "We want to study what our patients are using," said University of Colorado Assistant Professor Emily Lindley, who is investigating marijuana with high THC as an alternative to opioids for chronic back pain. Lindley and other researchers want others besides the University of Mississippi to get federal authorization to grow research pot. The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration created an application process for growers, but has not acted on more than two dozen applications. In June, Scottsdale Research Institute in Arizona asked the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia to order the DEA to process the applications. "We are still working through the process and those applications remain under review," said DEA spokeswoman Katherine Pfaff in an email Thursday. She declined to comment on the litigation. In response to questions from the AP, NIDA said there had been no major increase in demand for cannabis by researchers in recent years. Last year, 20 researchers got shipments of government marijuana, much of it from frozen cannabis grown in 2014. Since 2010, the number of researchers receiving government marijuana has ranged from eight to 21. Researchers should be able to obtain material from the new crop in the fall after harvest and analyses are completed, NIDA said.
美国政府正在种植五年来最大的一批研究大麻,以回应人们对 THC 和 CBD 含量高的品种的兴趣。 美国政府是几乎所有研究中大麻的唯一来源,但它仍然认为大麻是非法和危险的。 美国国家药物滥用研究所( NationalInstituteonDrugAbuses )周四在给美联社( AssociatedPress )的一封电子邮件中说,科学家们已经要求大麻与那些将医用或娱乐用大麻合法化的州销售的大麻更加接近。 该联邦机构表示,他们计划今年在密西西比大学种植2000公斤(4409磅)大麻。密西西比大学是联邦政府唯一的大麻生产合同供应商。虽然政府以不同的形式提供大麻,但这足够500万个大麻接头使用。 NIDA说,这种作物将被分为THC含量高的品种和CBD含量高的品种,“最近(对CBD)有兴趣,将其作为治疗多种疾病的潜在药物”。复方四氢大麻酚能改变大麻的思维;CBD不会让人兴奋。 去年,一种基于cbd的药物获得了联邦监管机构的批准,用于治疗两种罕见的癫痫,研究人员正在对其进行其他条件的研究。其他人则专注于THC。 科罗拉多大学助理教授艾米丽·林德利(Emily Lindley)说:“我们想研究我们的病人在使用什么。 林德利和其他研究人员希望密西西比大学以外的其他机构也能获得联邦政府的授权,种植研究大麻。美国药品监督管理局(U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration,简称fda)为大麻种植者创建了一个申请流程,但还没有对20多个申请采取行动。今年6月,亚利桑那州斯科茨代尔研究所(Scottsdale Research Institute)请求美国哥伦比亚特区上诉法院(U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia)命令DEA处理这些申请。 DEA发言人凯瑟琳·普法夫(Katherine Pfaff)在周四的一封电子邮件中说:“我们仍在处理过程中,这些申请仍在审查之中。”她拒绝就诉讼置评。 在回答美联社的问题时,奈达说,近年来,研究人员对大麻的需求并没有大幅增加。去年,20名研究人员获得了政府提供的大麻,其中大部分来自2014年种植的冷冻大麻。自2010年以来,接受政府大麻的研究人员数量从8人到21人不等。 NIDA说,研究人员应该能够在收获和分析完成后的秋季从这种新作物中获得材料。