Science

United States: Marijuana Does Not Raise Lung Cancer Risk

People who smoke marijuana do not appear to be at increased risk for developing lung cancer, new research suggests.

By Salynn Boyles, reviewed by Louise Chang, MD

There is a truth that must be heard! While a clear increase in cancer risk was seen among cigarette smokers in the study, no such association was seen for regular cannabis users.

Even very heavy, long-term marijuana users who had smoked more than 22,000 joints over a lifetime seemed to have no greater risk than infrequent marijuana users or nonusers.

The findings surprised the study’s researchers, who expected to see an increase in cancer among people who smoked marijuana regularly in their youth.

“We know that there are as many or more carcinogens and co-carcinogens in marijuana smoke as in cigarettes,” researcher Donald Tashkin, MD, of UCLA’s David Geffen School of Medicine tells WebMD. “But we did not find any evidence for an increase in cancer risk for even heavy marijuana smoking.” Carcinogens are substances that cause cancer.

Tashkin presented the findings today at The American Thoracic Society’s 102nd International Conference, held in San Diego.

Boomers Reaching Cancer Age

The study population was limited to people who were younger than 60 because people older than that would probably not have used marijuana in their teens and early adult years.

“People who may have smoked marijuana in their youth are just now getting to the age when cancers are being seen,” Tashkin says.

Europe: How Good is Hemp and Lime? Hemp Could Be Key To Zero-Carbon Houses

The environmental potential of hemp as a building material has never really been in doubt - it absorbs carbon as it grows and can be grown almost anywhere, cutting down on the need for energy-intensive transportation.

But is it any good?

There is a truth that must be heard! A study underway at the BRE Centre for Innovative Construction Materials at the University of Bath is attempting to clear up any doubts.

"The idea of using hemp and lime has been around in the UK for ten or 12 years now and there have been a number of applications but there's still relatively little scientific information on the performance of the materials," Prof Pete Walker, director of the centre, told edie.

"We've identified this as a significant barrier to market uptake."

He said that mainstream engineers, architects and buyers were shying away from a potential tool in the fight against climate change due to the absence of reliable independent information on its characteristics.

The research project is providing concrete answers to the questions of the construction industry and also experimenting with different ratios of hemp to lime in an effort to maximise its carbon cutting potential.

"The lime has all the embodied carbon and energy and, if we're honest, the cost," said Prof Walker.

"The hemp offsets this. Using renewable crops to make building materials makes real sense - it only takes an area the size of a rugby pitch four months to grow enough hemp to build a typical three bedroom house.

United States: Federal Monopoly Obstructs Medical Marijuana Research

Conflict of interest by University of Mississippi professor exposed

By Americans for Safe Access

There is a truth that must be heard! Washington, D.C. -- Medical marijuana advocates issued a report today aimed at drawing attention to the federal government's monopoly on the production of marijuana for medical research. The 14-page report, entitled "Obstruction of Medical Cannabis Research in the U.S.," highlights the federal effort to impede therapeutic research on marijuana and exposes a conflict of interest for University of Mississippi professor Mahmoud ElSohly, who holds an exclusive cultivation license issued by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).

Americans for Safe Access (ASA), the national medical marijuana advocacy group that issued the report, draws attention to the ways in which the federal monopoly impedes meaningful research and points to the need for a new policy that can be implemented under the Obama Administration. "In the United States, research is stalled," said Caren Woodson, ASA's Government Affairs Director. "And, in some cases, research is blocked by a complicated federal approval process, which restricts access to research-grade marijuana."

United States: Congress To Holder - Let UMASS Grow Pot

By Ryan Grim, HuffPost Reporting From DC

A bipartisan group of sixteen members of Congress sent a letter Thursday to Attorney General Eric Holder urging him to allow the University of Massachusetts to grow its own marijuana for medical research.

Marijuana used for research, and that distributed to patients in a closed federal program, is currently grown exclusively by the University of Mississippi. Patients who have smoked it and researchers who have tried to work with it say it's total swag (very low quality).

For eight years, UMASS Professor Lyle Craker has been fighting with the Drug Enforcement Administration to get a license to cultivate his own medical pot.

In February 2007 Craker looked to have won, when DEA Administrative Law Judge Mary Ellen Bittner ruled that his request was "in the public interest" and called on the agency to license him.

In a last-minute Bush Administration order, however, the DEA reversed Bittner's ruling and refused Craker the license, citing evidence that hadn't been presented during the initial hearing.

The letter from members of Congress encourages Holder "swiftly to amend or withdraw"
the decision and allow Craker to rebut the new DEA evidence.

Forty-five members of the House, along with Massachusetts Sens. Ted Kennedy and John Kerry, as well as the Lymphoma Foundation of America, the National Association for Public Health Policy, and the Multiple Sclerosis Foundation have all written the DEA in support of Craker's efforts.

Research: New Study - Cannabis Use Has No Impact On Liver Transplant Survival

By Radical Russ Belville, NORML Audio Stash

Longtime Stash listeners will remember the tragic story of Tim Garon, a Pacific Northwest man who was kicked off a liver transplant list because of his legal use of medical cannabis. Many, if not most transplant programs will refuse a patient with inactive cannabis metabolites based on gross prejudice against cannabis users and lack of understanding about medical cannabis.

So I am excited about this new study to be published out of the University of Michigan entitled, “Marijuana Use in Potential Liver Transplant Candidates.” These researchers began the study hypothesizing “that patients with chronic liver disease who were marijuana users will have inferior survival.” From 1999-2007 they studied 1,489 liver transplant patients, 155 of whom were cannabis users, identified by a drug screening. The result?

Upon multivariate analysis, MELD score, hepatitis C and transplantation were significantly associated with survival, while marijuana use was not.We conclude that patients who did and did not use marijuana had similar survival rates. Current substance abuse policies do not seem to systematically expose marijuana users to additional risk of mortality.

China: Oldest Marijuana Stash Found in Gobi Desert Grave

By Ethan Russo, Oxford University Press

Here is a great slideshow of pictures from the world's Oldest Marijuana Stash Found in Gobi Desert Grave.

Source: http://dsc.discovery.com/news/slideshows/marijuana-stash.html

[NORML Audio Stash]

Granny Storm Crow's List - "If the truth won't do, then something is wrong!"

By Storm Crow - http://medicalmarijuanapatient.com/forum/showthread.php?t=65

"If the truth won't do, then something is wrong!"

Granny Storm Crow's List

ADD/ ADHD

Marijuana and ADD Therapeutic uses of Medical Marijuana in the treatment of ADD
http://www.onlinepot.org/medical/add&mmj.htm

Cannabis as a medical treatment for attention deficit disorder

http://www.chanvre-info.ch/info/en/C...treatment.html

Cannabinoids effective in animal model of hyperactivity disorder
http://www.cannabis-med.org/english/...l.php?id=162#4

Cannabis 'Scrips to Calm Kids?
http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,117541,00.html

THC normalized impaired psychomotor performance and mood
http://bbsnews.net/article.php/20071001105829361

Moderate cannabis use has a positive effect on treatment for cocaine dependence in patients with comorbid ADHD and cocaine dependence

Canada: Researchers High On Ancient Pot Find

By Dean Beeby, Canadian Press

OTTAWA - Researchers say they have located the world's oldest stash of marijuana, in a tomb in a remote part of China.

The cache of cannabis is about 2,700 years old and was clearly "cultivated for psychoactive purposes," rather than as fibre for clothing or as food, says a research paper in the Journal of Experimental Botany.

The 789 grams of dried cannabis was buried alongside a light-haired, blue-eyed Caucasian man, likely a shaman of the Gushi culture, near Turpan in northwestern China.

The extremely dry conditions and alkaline soil acted as preservatives, allowing a team of scientists to carefully analyze the stash, which still looked green although it had lost its distinctive odour.

"To our knowledge, these investigations provide the oldest documentation of cannabis as a pharmacologically active agent," says the newly published paper, whose lead author is American neurologist Dr. Ethan B. Russo.

Remnants of ancient cannabis have been found in Egypt and other sites, and the substance has been referred to by authors such as the Greek historian Herodotus. But the tomb stash is the oldest so far that could be thoroughly tested for its properties.

The 18 researchers, most of them based in China, subjected the cannabis to a battery of tests, including carbon dating and genetic analysis. Scientists also tried to germinate 100 of the seeds found in the cache, without success.

Oregon: Hemp takes step towards mainstream

By Eco Textile News

An industrial hemp blended yarn has been successfully spun on conventional cotton ring-spinning equipment without modification and then knitted into jersey fabrics in trials sponsored by Hanesbrands Inc.

The hemp yarns were spun at North Carolina State University using fibres made with the ‘Crailar’ enzyme process from Naturally Advanced Technology, which uses enzyme technology to produce soft, comfortable textiles made from hemp and bast fibres that can better compete with cotton.

Tim Pleasants, Spun Yarn Lab Manager, NC State University, said, “We successfully carded and spun a blended Crailar yarn on our cotton ring spinning system. The resulting 20/1 Ne ring spun yarn was knitted into a 5-ounces per square yard jersey fabric. This is the first time in my 23-year yarn spinning career that I have seen hemp processed on conventional cotton spinning equipment.”

Earlier this summer, British Colombia-based Naturally Advanced Technologies (NAT) raised nearly US$2 million through a private placement of its shares and more recently signed a new promotional deal with Costco’s US stores.

United States: Drug Czar Mis-Used Marijuana Statistics as Scare Tactics While Arrests Soar, Reports Reveal

By Bonnie King, Salem-News.com

(WASHINGTON D.C.) - The major U.S. government study of drug use shows that the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy has badly failed to meet its own goals for reducing use of marijuana and other illegal drugs, according to a pair of new reports by George Mason University senior fellow Jon Gettman, Ph.D.

In addition, ONDCP and its chief, "Drug Czar" John Walters, have misused treatment statistics to suggest that marijuana is dangerously addictive when the government's own data suggest that arrest-driven treatment admissions have wasted tax dollars by treating thousands who were not truly drug-dependent.

All while the FBI's new tally is the highest marijuana arrest total ever-reported in law enforcement history.

"The government's own statistics demolish the White House drug czar's claims of success in his obsessive war on marijuana," said Rob Kampia, executive director of the Marijuana Policy Project in Washington, D.C. Kampia noted that during Walters' tenure, ONDCP has released at least 127 separate anti-marijuana TV, radio and print ads and 34 press releases focused mainly on marijuana, in addition to 50 reports from ONDCP and other federal agencies on marijuana or anti-marijuana campaigns.

"The most intense war on marijuana since 'Reefer Madness,' including record numbers of arrests every year since 2003, has wasted billions of dollars and produced nothing except pain and ruined lives."

Montana: Ex-Missoula neurologist pens paper on old stash

By MICHAEL JAMISON, Missoulian

A 2,700-year-old bowl of marijuana, the world’s oldest pot stash, has been unearthed from a tomb in central China.

“The evidence all indicates that there was intent to utilize this cannabis for psychoactive purposes,” said Ethan Russo. “What we’ve found here is the oldest, clear-cut and proven sample of psychoactive cannabis in the world.”

Russo, who for 24 years worked as a neurologist in Missoula and still serves as a pharmacology faculty affiliate at the University of Montana was lead author on a paper describing the find, published this month in the peer-reviewed “Journal of Experimental Botany.”

The tomb, Russo said, belonged to “a shaman, or a chief, someone of extremely high stature.”

Found alongside the skeleton and the 2 pounds of marijuana were several other items, including horse bridles, archery equipment and a harp. (No pipes were found, however, and Russo remains uncertain as to whether the marijuana was to be smoked or ingested in the afterlife.)

The site is located amid the Yanghai Tombs, near Turpan in China’s Gobi Desert region. Locals stumbled across the sprawling graveyard some two decades back, while digging irrigation wells, but it was not until 2003 that formal archaeological investigations were launched.

To date, Russo said, only 500 or so of the 2,500 graves there have been excavated.

Global: The Benefits of Organic Hemp Milk

by Dr. Edward Group

Though its name might be a bit misleading, organic hemp milk is a perfectly legal, not to mention healthy, alternative for vegetarians or non vegetarians. Produced from the seeds of the hemp plant, this milk has only begun to be sold in the United States within the past few years.

One concern that people have about organic hemp milk is that it might contain some of the chemical THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), which is found in marijuana. Rest assured that this ingredient is not present or associated with hemp milk.

Another concern is that the hemp seeds must be imported since it’s currently not legal to grow the hemp plant in the US. Some hemp milk producers have to rely on obtaining hemp seeds from farmers in Canada or Europe, where the growth of hemp plants for oil or milk is perfectly legal.

Health Benefits of Organic Hemp Milk

Organic hemp milk is also a great alternative to toxic cow’s milk and those who cannot consume dairy because of dietary issues.

One 8-Ounce glass contains the following healthy nutrients:

* 900mg Omega-3 Fatty Acid

* 2800mg Omega-6 Fatty Acid

* All 10 Essential Amino Acids

* 4 grams of Digestible Protein

* 46% of RDA of Calcium

* 0% Cholesterol

* Potassium

* Phosphorous

* Riboflavin

* Vitamin A

* Vitamin E

* Vitamin B12

* Folic Acid

* Vitamin D

* Magnesium

* Iron

* Zinc

* And more…

How To Make Your Own Organic Hemp Milk!

Ingredients:

hemp 1 cup hemp seeds (shelled)

hemp 5-6 cups of purified water

Canada: Industries turning to soy, fibres

By Becky Rynor, Canwest News Service

It was Henry Ford, the American founder of the Ford Motor Company and a prolific inventor, who did some of the earliest work in developing biocomposites -- products that combine organic fibres from agriculture and forestry waste with petroleum-based materials such as plastic.

"He was at the forefront," says Ed Trueman, with JER Envirotech of Delta, B.C.

"If you go back to the early days of Henry Ford, in the late teens and early 1920s, he did an awful lot of development work with soy-based products -- soy-based plastics, soy-based polymers that actually ended up in auto body panels. He was brought up on a farm and he was very concerned about the environment."

Ford was stymied in getting biocomposites widely developed and accepted, Trueman says, by the technological limitations of the time and the ready availability of cheap petroleum.

But recent advances in technology, combined with industry's desire to reduce costs and be environmentally conscious, is moving the field forward,says christian Belanger with the National Research Council.

Belanger says this has a growing number of industries looking at biocomposites for everything from food packaging to car and airplane components.

Europe: University of Bath to showcase cutting edge environmental research

By Science Centric

The global problem of climate change will hit the spotlight on Wednesday 17 September as researchers from across the region meet for a showcase on environmental sustainability.

Experts in engineering, chemistry, architecture, physics and economics will join forces at the University of Bath to discuss the climate change challenge. They will host an exhibition of some of the region's cutting edge research in the fields of sustainable energy and the environment.

Wednesday's event will also see the launch of the new Institute for Sustainable Energy and the Environment (I-SEE) by David Willetts MP, Shadow Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills.

Mitigating the effects of climate change is one of the greatest challenges facing science today due to the complex nature of the problem. The University of Bath's I-SEE will combine the expertise of world-class researchers from diverse disciplines of science, engineering, economics, management and social science to address the problem.

It will also study the socio-economic impacts of climate change, inform policy and provide technological solutions to mitigate the effects of global warming, helping the UK to achieve its target of reducing carbon dioxide emissions by 60% by 2050.

Some of the institute's ground-breaking research will feature at the showcase.

Key research areas of the exhibition include:

- Future sources of energy including improved energy storage, low cost solar cells and hydrogen fuel production and storage.

United States: 872,721 marijuana arrests in 2007, up 5.2% from 2006

By Russ Belville, NORML Stash

Record Number Of Americans Arrested For Marijuana

The FBI has released its annual report on Crime in the United States 2007. Once again, the number of people in the United States arrested for marijuana has gone up. 872,721 Americans were arrested for marijuana in 2007, and of those arrests, 89% or 775,138 were arrests for simple possession - not buying, selling, trafficking, or manufacture (growing).

This represents an increase in marijuana arrests of 5.2% from the previous year and the fifth straight year marijuana arrests have increased from the previous year. Now a marijuana smoker is arrested at the rate of 1 every 37 seconds and almost 100 marijuana arrests per hour.

Marijuana possession is increasingly the bulk of the “War on Drugs”

More arrests for marijuana are for simple possession than for any other drug. While only 11% of marijuana arrests involve buying, selling, trafficking, or manufacture, that rate for heroin and cocaine is 27% and that rate for synthetic drugs is 31%.

While arrests for marijuana sales/manufacturing increased by 7.6% over 2006, heroin and cocaine sale/manufacturing arrests dropped by 3.8% and synthetic drugs sales/manufacturing arrests dropped 2.6%.

While arrests for marijuana possession rose by 4.9%, heroin and cocaine possession arrests fell by 8.1% and synthetic drugs possession arrests fell by 5.4%.

Health: Skin churns out marijuana-like brain chemicals, Body's own cannabinoids help keep skin clear and healthy

By Robin Nixon

Marijuana-like substances made by the skin are necessary for a healthy complexion, a new study concludes.

The skin has joined the growing club of organs that is known to produce "endocannabinoids" — the body's own reefer. The biggest producer of endogenous pot is the brain.

Significantly, the new study pins down long-suspected connections between brain and skin and between stress and zits.
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Your thinking skin
In the skin, explained lead researcher Tamás Bíró of the University of Debrecen, Hungary, these compounds help the sebaceous glands protect us from harsh outer elements, such as the drying effects of wind and sun. Cannabinoids are thought to have a similar role in the leaves of the marijuana plant.

Among its protective functions, "endo-pot" stimulates oil production and tells hair follicles to stop producing hair. Whether this explains the plethora of pimples and receding hairlines at Grateful Dead concerts (or those of former band members) has not yet been determined.

The research, funded mostly by the Hungarian and German governments, will be detailed in the October 2008 issue of The Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology (FASEB) Journal.

Why is a psycho-stimulant working outside the brain?

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