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Major Breakthrough For Medical Cannabis Research

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The UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND) recognized this Wednesday the potential medical benefits of cannabis by passing the motion to reclassify cannabis from Schedule IV to Schedule I.

Many would consider this as a symbolic move, as very little profoundly changes for the medicinal or recreational industries – yet it is a major breakthrough for science and research.

Up until now, cannabis has been put side by side with hardcore drugs like heroin. Greatly inhibiting any research. Those days are over. 

With a historic vote of 27 in favor, 25 against, and one abstention, the CND has opened the door to recognizing the medicinal and therapeutic potential of the commonly-used but still a largely illegal recreational drug.

Cannabis still remains under strict international control through the Schedule 1 mandate. At least, this action has the potential to stimulate global research into potential therapeutic applications and public health effects.

“And for those countries that basically mirror the U.N. scheduling in their domestic legislation, it may lead to national descheduling and remove obstacles to use cannabis for medical and research purposes.” – Martin Jelsma. 

 

Not all were good news.

The UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs declined Recommendation 5.5, which suggested entirely remove CBD from the tight international control. 

The recommendation proposed to: “Add a footnote on cannabidiol preparations to Schedule I of the 1961 Convention to read: Preparations containing predominantly cannabidiol and not more than 0.2 percent of delta-9- tetrahydrocannabinol are not under international control.”

The major objection of the member-countries seemed to be the proposals’ unclear wording but they expressed willingness to revisit the issue in the future.

 

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A landmark study was published, providing clear guidelines for regulators


On top of that, a landmark study published its results in the Journal of the American Medical Association, showing that CBD does not impair driving. Thereby, providing much-needed insights into the magnitude and duration of impairment caused by different types of cannabis.

“Road safety is a primary concern. These results should allow for evidence-based laws and regulation for people receiving medical cannabis.” – said Dr. Arkell.

With rules and regulations for cannabis being reviewed and changed, these results should provide scientific guidance for regulators, while reassuring people receiving CBD-only products that it is completely safe to drive. 

Cannabis-related products have increasingly been ordinated to aid conditions such as epilepsy, anxiety, chronic pain, and addictions. This is the first study that proves the lack of CBD effects on driving and clarifies the exact THC impairments.

 

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Luka Marjanovic

Partner

Luka holds a Bachelor’s in International Business and a Master’s in International Management. During his undergraduate studies he worked as a research assistant in the field of Big Data; founded his own consulting firm providing services to local SME's in various sectors and invested in the capital markets; as well as working pro-bono providing education and career counselling. Prior to his business education, he studied Biology-and-Biotechnology, and served in the Danish Royal Army as Second Sergeant, leading and managing a group under extreme conditions and pressure. Luka has spent significant time abroad, living and working in seven different countries. When he's not in the office, he's chasing the next gusts windsurfing, carving the mountain snowboarding or out in the forest for a jog.

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