Study: Washington Teens Not Using More Marijuana Following Legalization

The legalization of marijuana in Washington State is not associated with an increase in marijuana use by most teens, according to a study published in The Journal of Adolescent Health.

For the study researchers from Washington State University, the University of Massachusetts, and the Colorado School of Public Health assessed trends in teen marijuana use and employment in the years immediately prior to and immediately following the enactment of retail marijuana sales (2010 to 2016), reports NORML in a news release.

The study found that “marijuana use decreased significantly among working and non-working 8th and 10th graders.” Marijuana use similarly declined among 12th graders who were not employed, while among 12th graders who were employed more than eleven hours per week marijuana use actually increased over the study period, though just slightly. The study’s authors acknowledged that this latter finding was not unexpected because “the workplace may expose adolescents to peer or adult coworkers’ potentially unhealthy behaviors, including substance use.” Authors further acknowledged that working youth were also more likely to have reported using cannabis prior to the passage of legalization.

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Study: CBD May be Effective in the Treatment of Painful Diabetic Neuropathy

According to a new study being published by the journal Brain Research, and epublished online by the National Institute of Health,  cannabidiol (CBD) ” may be effective in the treatment of painful diabetic neuropathy “.

“Most diabetic patients describe moderate to severe pain symptoms whose pharmacological treatment is palliative and poorly effective”, states the study’s abstract. “Cannabidiol (CBD) has shown promising results in painful conditions.” With this in mind, researchers “aimed to investigate the potential antinociceptive effect of CBD over the mechanical allodynia in streptozotocin-induced diabetic (DBT) rats, as well as its involved mechanisms.”

For the study, “Wistar adult male diabetic rats were treated acutely or sub-chronically (for 14 days) with CBD (0.1, 0.3 or 3 mg/Kg, intraperitoneal; i.p.) and had their mechanical threshold assessed using the electronic Von Frey. ” Acute treatment with CBD (at doses of 0.3 and 3 mg/Kg) “exerted a significant anti-allodynic effect, which is not associated with locomotor impairment. “The antinociceptive effect of CBD (3 mg/Kg) was not altered by the pre-treatment with CB1 or CB2 receptor antagonists (AM251 and AM630; respectively; both at a dose of 1 mg/kg, i.p.) nor by glycine receptor antagonist (strychnine hydrochloride, 10 μg/rat, intrathecal, i.t.).”

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Connecticut Marijuana Legalization Bill Approved by Committee

Legislation to legalize marijuana was passed recently by the Connecticut Joint Committee on General Law.

House Bill 7371 was passed by the committee in a 10 to 8 vote, reports High Times. The measure must now be passed by the full Senate and House before it can go to the governor’s desk.

If the measure is passed into law it would legalize and regulate commercial marijuana cultivation, processing, and sales in the state, while companion measures to tax cannabis and allow for expungements of past convictions are being considered by different committees.

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Regular Marijuana Use Associated With Reduced BMI, Says Study

Marijuana use over time is inversely related to obesity, according to a new study published in the International Journal of Epidemiology.

For the study researchers assessed the relationship between cannabis use and body mass index (BMI) over time in a nationally representative sample of 33,000 subjects.

Investigators reported that cannabis-using subgroups exhibited “appreciably attenuated BMI gain” over the trial period as compared to non-users and quitters, “with the largest attenuation seen in the ‘persistent use’ group.”

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Smokeable Medical Marijuana Bill Passed by Florida Senate

Florida’s full Senate on Thursday passed a bill to repeal the state’s ban on smokeable medical marijuana.

The Senate passed Senate Bill 182 by a vote of 34 to 4, reports the Orlando Sentinel. The measure would allow medical marijuana patients to smoke marijuana, which was legalized by voters before being prohibited by lawmakers.

“Marijuana is now medicine in the state of Florida and how that medicine is administered should be between their doctor and that patient,” said Sen. Gary Farmer, D-Lighthouse Point.

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Report: Over 200,000 Full-Time Jobs Created by State-Legal Marijuana Businesses

Marijuana businesses that are legal under their state’s law hired 64,000 new employees in 2018, and now employs over 200,000 full-time workers, according to data compiled by Whitney Economics and Leafly.com.

The report, entitled Cannabis Jobs Count, identifies some 211,000 full-time jobs in the legal cannabis sector. This total increases to 296,000 jobs when ancillary employers are also included.

By comparison, 112,000 Americans are estimated to currently work in the textile industry, while only about 52,000 people are employed by the coal mining industry.

“[T]he legal cannabis industry remains a substantial and unrecognized engine of grassroots job creation,” authors concluded. “In fact, cannabis job growth is proceeding at double digit rates in many states despite being overtaxed locally and heavily penalized at the federal level.”

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Legislation to Regulate and Tax Marijuana in Vermont Passes Senate With Veto-proof Majority

A legislative proposal to tax and regulate marijuana for adult use in Vermont third and final reading in the Vermont Senate Friday with a veto-proof majority; the vote was 23 to 5.

The measure now moves to the Vermont House of Representatives for consideration. Passage in the House would send it to Governor Phill Scott for consideration.

Senate Bill 54, sponsored by 15 of the state’s 30 senators, would create a system of regulated marijuana production and sales for adult use in Vermont, reports the Marijuana Policy Project in a press release. Retail sales would be subject to a 10 percent tax, and municipalities could establish a 1 percent local option tax if they host a retailer. Under the proposal, oversight of the medical cannabis program would be shifted from the Department of Safety to a new independent commission beginning January 1, 2021. It would also change the word “marijuana” to “cannabis” throughout state statutes. A detailed summary of S. 54 is available at http://bit.ly/Vermont-S54.

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Study: Cannabinoids May Be An Effective Adjunct Treatment for Pancreatic Cancer

Cannabinoids “may be an effective adjunct for the treatment of pancreatic cancer”, according to a new study.

The study, titled Potential Use of Cannabinoids for the Treatment of Pancreatic Cancer, was published by the Journal of Pancreatic Cancer, and has been epublished by the National Institute of Health.

“Cannabinoid extracts may have anticancer properties, which can improve cancer treatment outcomes”, begins the study’s abstract. “The aim of this review is to determine the potentially utility of cannabinoids in the treatment of pancreatic cancer.”

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New Hampshire House Committee Approves Marijuana Legalization Bill

A key committee in New Hampshire’s House of Representatives has given approval to legislation that would legalize marijuana for those 21 and older.

House Bill 481 was passed last week by the House Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee by a vote of 10 to 9. The measure now moves towards a vote by the full House of Representatives. It will need to pass the House, and then the Senate, before it can be sent to Governor Chris Sununu for consideration.

Under the proposed law, those 21 and older would be allowed to possess up to an ounce of marijuana for personal use. They could also grow up to six marijuana plants (or 12 per household if there’s more than one resident).

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Marijuana Banking Bill Passed by West Virginia House of Delegates

Legislation that would protect banks who provide services to medical marijuana businesses has been passed by the full West Virginia House of Delegates.

House Bill 2538 was overwhelmingly approved by the House, with 89 members voting in favor and just seven voting in opposition. The measure, which was introduced by Delegate Eric Nelson (R), now moves to the Senate. Passage in the Senate would put it before Governor Jim Justice for consideration.

“The Legislature finds and declares that the inability to provide banking services needed to collect and remit the fees, penalties, and taxes authorized under the West Virginia Medical Cannabis Act has delayed the implementation and is precluding access by the patients and investment by the persons and entities interested in providing services under the Act”, states the bill’s official text. “The purpose of this section is to provide a solution to the banking problems encountered by the state in connection with the Act.”

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