This article shares news items related to regulations, products, and research. The medical cannabis (MC) industry is adding interesting variations to what is currently on the market. Technology has advanced the old ways of extracting cannabis oil. Now we have Rosen machines that you can buy from Walmart. MC is becoming more and more mainstream as all across the US and the world laws are being changed.

The cannabis plant was thought to have over 200 molecules, four more were just identified in the past week. There are over thousands of MC strains: granddaddy purple, bubba kush, purple kush, to name a few. Tangilope, grown by Matrix Nevada, smells like tangerines, and is available in many dispensaries in Las Vegas.

Suzy Q is a great strain added to the burgeoning world of CBD. It is a high CBD, low-THC strain with a piney taste that helps treat symptoms with little to no high. It has been tested at upwards of 59:1 (CBD:THC), is great for daytime use or by those who want to relieve chronic pain, nausea, arthritis, muscle spasms, and anxiety without psychoactive effects. Now there is a website library to keep track of the strains.

MC is not just for the elderly or chronically ill. There are excellent vaginal suppositories available with a high ratio of CBD for treatment of dysmenorrhea. No more taking high doses of Advil which can cause gastric bleeding. Vaginal and rectal absorption of MC bypasses the liver and CBD does not have a psychoactive effect.

Testing technology is advancing the safety of the product. Competition has lead to state testing laws being updated as we read. CO just passed testing for MC on July 1st. Tests for THC and CBD ratios are only the beginning. Nevada on July 1, 2017 made cannabis legal and is bringing the recreational and MC on a par with the food industry. Leslie Bockor states Nevada has developed the framework for the world on regulating cannabis. It is the only state testing for microbial contamination, biological contamination, mold, mildew, fungus, heavy metals, pesticides, fungicides in parts per million and parts per billion. It’s the cleanest cannabis that’s ever been produced because of the testing regulations. More advanced testing is also identifying the terpenes, which give it smell, and flavonoids, which give it taste.

Nevada receives tourist from all over the world. They have a more flexible and common sense philosophy of regulating things other jurisdictions don’t — gaming, mixed martial arts, prostitution, and escort services. How disruptive is it to ask patients to stop taking their cannabis with chemotherapy just because they come to visit. The common sense approach is to allow reciprocity. Other states have a lot of catching up to do.

The federal government continues in its vastness to make one department ignorant of what other departments do. The National Institutes of Health, (NIH), act like they are working for a different country. While saying cannabis has no medical us, we collaborate with other countries on research. Most egregious is the use of US grown MC that is so poorly cultivated it looks like ground oregano instead of the rich budding plant that it is.

The NIH Italy, and Spain researched the use of (E)-β-caryophyllene (BCP) which is found in many essential oils of spice, like black pepper, and food plants with recognized anti-inflammatory properties. The study demonstrates BCP may be an excellent therapeutic agent to prevent cisplatin-induced nephrotoxicity. Given the excellent safety profile of BCP in humans it has tremendous therapeutic potential in multitude diseases associated with inflammation.

The most exciting trend is how in the past year more and more congressmen, who now have firsthand experience with family using MC, are open to changing federal law: Feinstein, Grassley, Blumenauer, O’Rourke, Garrett, Amash, and Tom Davis are aggressively leading the pack. It is not enough to worry about the Rohrabacker-Blumenauer law that protects MC users from federal prosecution. We need to change federal laws. Ask your congressman how they are helping these courageous members of Congress.

My next article will review the trends internationally that put the US to shame.

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