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Research Says You Can Use Cannabis To Stop Using Cannabis.. Maybe?

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Sounds like a bit of a non sequitor but according the the results of a study just published in the Lancet (UK) it might well be a possibility ?

The study is the first to report that daily prescribed medical-use CBD use can cause reduction in cannabis use among people with cannabis use disorder, but the four-week study was not designed to provide robust estimates of the magnitude or duration of efficacy and further studies are needed.

NEWS RELEASE 

The Lancet Psychiatry: First clinical trial of its kind studies whether cannabidiol could help treat cannabis use disorder, compared to placebo

A phase 2a trial of 82 people investigated whether cannabidiol (CBD) is safe, and can help people with cannabis use disorder reduce cannabis use.

Prescription medication of cannabis extract cannabidiol, or CBD, is safe for daily use in treating cannabis use disorder, and could help people to cut down on cannabis use, according to an initial randomised controlled trial published in The Lancet Psychiatry journal.

The study is the first to report that daily prescribed medical-use CBD use can cause reduction in cannabis use among people with cannabis use disorder, but the four-week study was not designed to provide robust estimates of the magnitude or duration of efficacy and further studies are needed.

Researchers found an optimal daily dose of between 400mg and 800mg of CBD, which is considerably higher than concentrations found in CBD products that are available without prescription (which typically contain around 25mg CBD). They warn that such products should not be used for medicinal purposes.

The authors say that these findings are important in light of major policy changes surrounding the production and sale of cannabis products, increases in the number of people entering treatment for cannabis use disorders worldwide, and the current absence of recommended treatments for cannabis use disorder.

Dr Tom Freeman, the study’s lead author and Director of the Addiction and Mental Health Group at the University of Bath, UK, said: “Our study provides the first causal evidence to support cannabidiol, or CBD, as a treatment for cannabis use disorders. This is encouraging, as there are currently no drug treatments for cannabis addiction. CBD products are widely available in many countries but we would not advise people to self-medicate with these products. People with concerns about their cannabis use should always speak to a healthcare professional in the first instance.” [1]

Cannabis addiction affects an estimated 22 million people worldwide – similar to the prevalence of opioid use disorders – and the proportion of people seeking help for cannabis use disorders has risen in all world regions apart from Africa. However, there are currently no medications recommended for the treatment of cannabis use disorders.

Cannabidiol, also known as CBD, is one of more than 80 chemicals present in cannabis. By itself, CBD has been reported to induce feelings of relaxation and calm, but it does not cause the “high” associated with cannabis use, which is caused by a different chemical called tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC. As a result, CBD is sold legally in many countries in oils, capsules, creams, tea and other products.

Previous studies have suggested that taking CBD products could help to reduce withdrawal symptoms in people who are actively trying to quit cannabis use. However, it hasn’t been possible to determine whether these effects were due to CBD, because the studies either used an open-label design (where the participants knew what medications they were taking and so the results could have been biased), or CBD was given together with THC so it wasn’t possible to say to which chemical the effects were attributable.

In this latest study, researchers carried out the first randomised clinical trial of cannabidiol for the treatment of cannabis addiction. All 82 people who took part in the study had been diagnosed with a cannabis use disorder of at least moderate severity, which means they experienced at least four out of 11 possible symptoms of addiction. They had all expressed a desire to quit within the next month, and had tried to quit on at least one occasion before.

Participants were randomly assigned to treatment groups and asked to take two capsules of CBD twice daily for four weeks. The placebo group were given sham capsules containing no CBD, while the others received a daily dose of either 200mg, 400mg or 800mg CBD. All of the participants received six counselling sessions designed to help them quit using cannabis, which took place before and during the study period.

Weekly urine samples were tested for levels of THC to assess how much cannabis had been consumed in the past week. Participants were also asked to report how many days they had abstained from using cannabis that week.

The trial used an adaptive design to identify which doses of CBD were effective or ineffective compared to placebo. In the first stage of the trial, 12 people per group were assigned to either placebo, 200mg, 400mg or 800mg CBD (48 total). After the first phase of the study, the 200mg dose was found to be ineffective and these participants were removed from the trial. A further 34 people were recruited to the second stage of the study and randomly assigned to receive daily doses of either the placebo (11 people), 400mg CBD (12 people) or 800mg CBD (11 people).

Daily CBD doses of 400mg and 800mg were both found to reduce participants’ cannabis intake (reducing THC levels in the urine by -94.21ng/mL and -72.02ng/mL, respectively). In addition, abstinence from cannabis use increased by an average of 0.5 days per week in the group who received the 400mg daily dose of CBD and 0.3 days per week in the group who received 800mg CBD daily.

The researchers observed no difference in side effects experienced by the placebo group and those receiving any dose of CBD. 77 of 82 participants completed the treatment and those who dropped out did so because of missing study visits, being lost to follow up, not taking the study medication, or taking additional medications, and not because of the CBD treatment. There were no serious adverse events during the study, suggesting that CBD is safe and well tolerated at the doses tested.

Professor Valerie Curran, senior author and Director of the Clinical Psychopharmacology Unit at University College London, UK, said: “Our findings indicate that CBD doses ranging from 400mg to 800mg daily have the potential to reduce cannabis use in clinical settings, but higher doses are unlikely to bring any additional benefit. Larger studies are needed to determine the magnitude of the benefits of daily CBD for reducing cannabis use.” [1]

The study was carried out over a four week treatment period with follow up extending to six months. The researchers say additional research is needed to investigate the extent to which their findings translate to different durations of treatment. Studies are also needed to investigate whether CBD directly reduces cannabis use or if it reduces other mental health symptoms which might indirectly affect cannabis use, such as anxiety.

###

NOTES TO EDITORS

The study was funded by the Medical Research Council. It was conducted by researchers from the University of Bath (UK), University College London (UK), Kings College London (UK), National Institute for Health Research University College London Hospitals Biomedical Research Centre (UK), Camden and Islington National Health Service Foundation Trust (UK) and the University of Exeter (UK).

The labels have been added to this press release as part of a project run by the Academy of Medical Sciences seeking to improve the communication of evidence. For more information, please see: http://www.sciencemediacentre.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/AMS-press-release-labelling-system-GUIDANCE.pdf if you have any questions or feedback, please contact The Lancet press office pressoffice@lancet.com

[1] Quote direct from author and cannot be found in the text of the Article.

Peer reviewed / Randomised Controlled Trial / People

Source: https://cannabislaw.report/research-says-you-can-use-cannabis-to-stop-using-cannabis-maybe/

Cannabis

Current Research on Effect Specific Uses of Cannabis

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New research regarding the benefits of cannabis and its main properties of CBD and THC continues to emerge as more countries and states legalize the medical and recreational use of marijuana. Also, because of legalization, the business potential of the cannabis industry continues to grow. Cannabis companies can now distribute to a broader range of people. However, there is more to cannabis than different strains (Indica or Sativa) or the ratio of CBD to THC. Another essential cannabinoid is terpenes, and they play a critical role in the effectiveness of cannabis.

A Perfect High

As the cannabis industry continues to enter the mainstream sphere, it must determine how to market to the mass consumer who expects their cannabis product to be consistent in quality and give off the desired effect. Consumers search for a product that provides a more tailored experience and a more controlled high. Like how the consumer can pick their alcohol to achieve desired effects, cannabis companies and scientists research ways to deliver a custom product. Before a consumer buys a product, they need to know if the product’s cost matches the quality of the experience.

THC causes impairment, slower reaction time, and difficulty performing simple tasks. Consumers want to control their level of buzz. Just like there is a wide variety of alcohol, each with its flavors, and proof, that allows a consumer to have their own unique experience. Cannabis companies strive to achieve a range of products that can mimic the desired effect, from calming to energetic or happy. Consumers also want to test how their body responds to these products to make the most informed decision about what is right for their needs and works best for them.

Ultimately, scientists continue to learn about the importance of terpenes and CBD to modify THC’s effects. The largest cannabis companies and their teams of scientists keep their research under wraps for competitive reasons. Every company wants to be the first to produce a controlled, tailored product. Whoever discovers this first will have an advantage within the cannabis industry.

The Entourage Effect

Cannabis companies and scientists ultimately want to achieve a way to tame THC, a term first introduced by scientist Ethan Russo in 2011. They estimate the cannabis industry will grow as large as the alcohol industry and generate billions of dollars in revenue a year, but only if they can manufacture a product that consistently delivers. In 1998, scientists Raphael Mechoulam and Shimon Ben-Shabat discovered the entourage effect, or the combination of THC, the psychoactive component, CBD (cannabidiol), an active non-psychoactive ingredient, and terpenes, the flavor and taste profile of each strain. All three elements have a unique effect on the body, depending on each ingredient’s ratio and combination.

However, with just the cannabis plant, it is hard to replicate the same feeling and its effects on the body since each plant, grown from different marijuana seeds, has its unique properties. Scientists continue to try and isolate these components to learn better ways to use them as a controlled substance. Also known as whole plant synergy, the main ingredients THC, CBD, terpenes, and other cannabinoids are also essential to unlock the health benefits of cannabis and how to use each ingredient to treat chronic pain and diseases better.

Evidence shows that cannabinoids boost other cannabinoids; for example, THC enhances CBD’s medicinal properties, while CBD modifies and controls the effects of Eagle Moon High THC Seeds, producing a more controlled high. Each cannabinoid is more effective together, which is why THC alone or CBD only products derived from hemp are less potent and effective. There are also other minor cannabinoids at play, such as CBG or CBN, that scientists continue to research. Emerging research also suggests the possibility of two different types of entourage effects: Intra-entourage refers to the interactions of cannabinoids and terpenes and inter-entourage, which relates to the interactions between terpenes to terpenes and cannabinoids to cannabinoids. However, research slowly begins to unearth the role terpenes play in the entourage effect and its full potential.

Terpenes and Future Potential

Cannabis consumers are more sophisticated than society’s perpetuated stereotype of the stoner or hippie. Consumers want to know about the benefits and properties of cannabis, such as Indica versus Sativa, and THC versus CBD. While they may be more familiar with these terms, terpenes are a newly discussed topic amongst cannabis circles, and consumers and scientists alike want to unlock terpene’s full potential. Scientists describe terpenes as the flavor profile in all plants but specifically provide each cannabis strain with its taste and smell.

Researchers today understand that the properties of terpenes go beyond just flavor, smell, and stimulating moods, but modulating brain activity that can have potential health benefits. CBD and THC have higher potency together, and the same is true that terpenes, along with other cannabinoids, work better together and have a more substantial impact. Terpenes and cannabinoids can increase blood flow, enhance motor and sensory functions, and eliminate respiratory bacteria that cause MRSA. The terpenes and cannabinoid attribute to the effectiveness of marijuana or cannabis products in the treatment of chronic pain, inflammation, depression, anxiety, and even fungal and bacterial infections.

 

Companies define the use of cannabis for medicinal or holistic reasons, by the strain or CBD to THC ratio. However, new research suggests that the terpene profile may be one of the most critical elements in the effectiveness of the strain and its intended use. As the cannabis industry and scientists compete to unlock the potential of terpenes and its connection to THC, CBD, and other cannabinoids, consumers will gain access to a marijuana experience unlike anything before.

 

AUTHOR BIO:
Crystal Wilson. Crystal has been closely studying the cannabis industry trends for quite some time. Intrigued by the booming growth of this sector, she takes interest in penning down her views providing quality insight on current marijuana trends, particularly medical cannabis.

 

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Jay-Z announces new line of cannabis products dubbed Monogram

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Rapper and entrepreneur Jay-Z is launching his own cannabis brand in partnership with Caliva, the California-based weed company that hired the star as its chief brand strategist last year. 

Named Monogram, Jay-Z’s line of marijuana products launched its website and social media accounts on Friday.

“Monogram marks a new chapter in cannabis defined by dignity, care and consistency. It is a collective effort to bring you the best, and a humble pursuit to discover what the best truly means,” Monogram’s website highlights.

No further information on the specific products that will be sold under the Monogram brand has been released yet. 

However, according to the website, the flower used in Monogram’s products is grown in small batches, with a board of “cannabis experts” tasked with grading and hand-selecting each flower that goes into the line. 

The New York rapper joined Caliva in 2019 as a brand strategist, which entailed overseeing the creative direction of the company. Furthermore, Jay was focused on Caliva’s social equity efforts as he aimed to increase economic participation of people disproportionately harmed by marijuana prohibition in the newly legal industry. 

As for when consumers can expect to try Jay-Z new products, a spokesperson told the New York Daily News Monogram still hasn’t set its dispensary release schedule. The line will “definitely be available across all of California,” according to the spokesperson.

In other news, basketball star Shawn Kemp who played for the Seattle SuperSonics is also showing his love of pot. Kemp is set to open Seattle’s first black-owned marijuana dispensary this Friday. The Sonics legend named his dispensary Shawn Kemp’s Cannabis and is hoping to serve as a model for others in the black community who might be interested in foraying into the legal marijuana business in the area. 

“I’m looking forward to welcoming Sonics fans on a regular basis, starting with opening day. I hope that Shawn Kemp’s Cannabis will be an inspiration for people to get involved with the legal cannabis industry, especially people of color,” the Reign Man said in a press release. 

Source: https://greencamp.com/jay-z-announces-new-line-of-cannabis-products-dubbed-monogram/

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Analysis: Legal weed in Texas would generate over $500 million in tax revenue per year

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Legalizing marijuana in Texas could generate over half a billion dollars in tax revenue per year and create more than 40,000 new jobs, according to the results of a report released by Vicente Sederberg LLP earlier this month. 

Legal cannabis sales in Texas would reach about $2.7 billion annually based on the fact that there are more than 1.5 million residents over the age of 21 that consume pot on a monthly basis, the analysis calculated. 

The estimated tax revenue was calculated under the assumption Texas would tax marijuana sales at the same rate as Colorado at 20.6%. This would amount to $1.1 billion in taxes per biennium, while Texas could collect an additional $10 million per year through the issuing of marijuana business licenses.

The report notes Colorado has raised nearly $13 million on average per year just from license and application fees. Furthermore, the report indicated that current taxpayer dollars that go towards marijuana arrests and prosecutions amount to $311 million per year – money that Texas would save should it legalize pot.  

“States across the country are seeing the benefits of legalizing and regulating cannabis. It is inspiring lawmakers in prohibition states to reexamine the efficacy and costs of their current policies and take a closer look at the alternatives,” said Shawn Hauser, a partner at Vicente Sederberg.

“The goal of this report is to provide a snapshot of the economic benefits Texas would experience if it started treating cannabis more like alcohol for adults 21 years of age and older,” he commented on the new report

Aside from the tax revenue that legal weed in Texas could generate, the report highlighted marijuana’s job creation potential. An estimated 20,000 to 40,000 new jobs would be available in the newly legal industry, with tens of thousands of additional indirect positions, the report estimated.  

Hauser also pointed out the added economic benefits of legalization in Texas given current uncertainties provoked by the coronavirus pandemic.

“Texas is leaving an enormous amount of money on the table by keeping cannabis illegal,” according to him. 

Texas was once known for having the strictest drug laws in the U.S., but the state has softened its stance on cannabis in recent years. A very limited medical marijuana program was established in 2015, while, more recently, cannabis possession arrests in the state have been significantly declining after hemp became legal.   

Source: https://greencamp.com/analysis-legal-weed-in-texas-would-generate-over-500-million-in-tax-revenue-per-year/

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