Medical Marijuana Backers Slam New Federal Research Guidelines
Alan Leshner, PhD, director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse, tells WebMD that four or five federally sponsored studies of medical marijuana are currently underway. "It's an attempt to expand research; but research, as opposed to what some other people want, is ... just another vehicle to distribute marijuana more readily," Leshner says.
Another beef the marijuana protestors have with the new regulations has to do with guidelines that detractors say "would still place a much greater burden on medicinal marijuana researchers than on drug companies that develop and study newly synthesized pharmaceuticals." The gripe is that marijuana protocols would face additional bureaucratic hoops in the form of a special HHS review panel.
According to neurologist Dennis Petro, MD, "There's actually no incentive for a pharmaceutical company today to do this research, because of these guidelines."