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 Senator Kennedy pleaded with the DEA to stop interfering with medical marijuana research.  The Senator, along with Senator Kerry and forty-three Congressmen, sent at least one-hundred and ten official letters to DEA Administrators Tandy and Lionhart, Attorney General Holder and Deputy Attorney General Ogden with concerns that the DEA and ONDCP were purposefully keeping a monopoly on marijuana and keeping scientific and medical research from happening.  They also requested that Dr.Lyle Cracker , an expert in plant genetics, plant physiology and biochemistry at the University of Massachusetts be allowed to grow research grade cannabis at  the University of Massachusetts for an FDA study already approved by the FDA to explore the possibilities to producing cannabis based medicines in pill form.  

The DEA will currently only allow one site in the entire country to grow marijuana, and only one man has a license to grow cannabis for the entire country.

In 2007, Federal Judge Mary Bittner ruled after seven days of professional testimony that the DEA was not releasing enough cannabis or of a high enough  medical quality to support research that the public deserves on marijuana.  Judge Bittner ruled that the ” it is the public interest” that the DEA allow Dr. Craker a Schedule 1 License to produce medical grade marijuana. DEA Administrator Lionhart decided on Jan. 14, 2009 to disregard Judge Bitters ruling. http://www.maps.org/mmj/kennedy_Kerry_to_Ogden_april_29_2009.pdf

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 When Ted Kennedy was originally diagnosed  with brain cancer in May of 2008, Cannabis TV posted the latest science on the potential for cannabis and cannabinoids to be effective treatment for brain cancer. The National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws has compiled recent medical research on the anti-cancer effects  of cannabinoids on Glioma cancer.

In this video from the 2008 Conference on Cannabis Therapeutics, Rick Doblin, founder of the MAPS,  explains efforts to break the government monopoly on medical Cannabis production in America, including Dr.Lyle Cracker’s application. Conference hosted by Patients Out of Time.NIDA, DEA & Medical Cannabis Research, with Rick Doblin, MAPS

“Marijuana, in its natural form, is one of the safest therapeutically active substances known to man. It would be unreasonable, arbitrary and capricious for the DEA to continue to stand between those sufferers and the benefits of this substance in light of the evidence in this record.”
– Francis L. Young, DEA’s own Administrative Law Judge, 1988

Posted by Muggles 

 

 

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sativaA perfect storm of relaxed federal intervention, intriguing new science and the failure of pharmaceutical narcotics for treating chronic illness has citizens clambering for legal access to medical Cannabis (marijuana) and several state legislatures scrambling for solutions to an issue many politicians don’t adequately understand.

While most states with legal medical marijuana are concentrated in the west, their programs established through voter referendum, eastern states generally don’t have ballot initiative processes, so changes must come through the legislature. So far, lawmakers in three states have passed medical marijuana access statutes – Hawaii, New Mexico and Rhode Island. But several more are poised to join the list and the thirteen states with legal medical marijuana access.

NJHeadline: June 5, 2009 – New Jersey: Tighter Medical-Marijuana Bill Clears Panel– The Garden State’s journey for medical Cannabis has gone on for years, but now appears close to fruition. The House has passed it’s own version of the bill approved by the Senate last winter, but with substantial changes that merit concern. Removed were provisions for patients growing their own medicine – instead, the Cannabis must be procured through approved treatment centers. At a  committee hearing on June 4th, and ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease) patient struggles to express to lawmakers her preference for a natural medicine verses pharmaceutical narcotics for her terminal illness -shown here by the Coalition for Medical Marijuana in New Jersey on their You Tube channel:ALS Patient – NJ Medical Marijuana Assembly Committee 6-4-09

Hightened emotion is a side-effect of ALS – this is one brave lady. I know another brave soul with ALS who has found Cannabis to be a life saver for her, having survived for 23 years now and enjoying good quality of life. Visit her You Tube channel for this compelling story.

nhempshireHeadline: June 24, 2009 – New Hampshire: Panel’s Changes In Medical Marijuana Bill Face Concord– A state whose name traces to Cannabis Hemp had already passed a medical marijuana bill in both of its’ legislative bodies, but made a last minute change upon threat of veto by Governor Lynch – guess what, patients will not be allowed to grow, but must procure through three “Compassion Centers”, with no more than two ounces possessed at any time. Matt Simon of NH Common Sense for Marijuana Policy and an opposing Senator appear on this video: NH senator vs. Pot Activist

The outlawing of growing medical Cannabis by individuals may seem logical for several reasons – quality control; security; residential codes and risks associated with amateur “grow-ops”. Certainly, many patients can’t grow their own and dispensaries will be necessary for many reasons. . But experience in Canada highlight problems with the state system – low quality and high cost. It’s not surprising that government agencies are not famous for producing high quality Cannabis. Ending the prohibition would end most problems. Indeed, the Institute of Medicine Report in 1999 recommended universal and immediate patient access to medical cannabis in its’ natural form. 

Case in point: The U.S. government already grows Cannabis for several legal patients grandfathered in from the Investigational New Drugs Program, closed to Cannabis in 1991. Grown at the University of Mississippi, the government pot is notorious for its’ seeds and stems content, extreme age (typically 12 years old, freeze-dried). ctc1Although shown to be effective in long-term studies, patients and researchers are demanding the end of the government monopoly on growing Cannabis. At a recent Clinical Conference on Cannabis Therapeutics, hosted by Patients Out of Time, legal patient Irv Rosenfeld displays seeds and stems collected over a years time from his medicine shipments. Also in this video is Elvy Musikka, a legal patient receiving Cannabis for her Glaucoma, who doubts the concern of the federal government for her health and sight.Seeds & Stems Blues – Irv & Elvy’s Legal Marijuana

Ther are two eastern states that are considering medical marijuana programs with provisions for personal growing still in place – Delaware and North Carolina.

DEHeadline: June 1, 2009 – DE: Editorial: Medical Marijuana Is a Necessary CompassionSenate Bill 94 has been introduced in Delaware, allowing for growing by patients and six ounces in their possession. In this news video, a patient eloquently explains how Cannabis lets him decrease the amount of narcotics and their side-effects – a synergistic benefit now substantiated by science.Delaware Online News: Medical Marijuana Bill Introduced

ncHeadline: June 23, 2009 – NC: Editorial: House Ponders Legalizing Medical Use Of Marijuana – The Bible-Belt state of North Carolina is considering legislation that would allow individual growing, caregivers and dispensaries. Crafted from the best aspects of many state’s bills and consultation with court-certified experts like Chris Conrad, the NC Medical Marijuana Act is generating news and debate in the House health committee. The NC Cannabis Patient Network’s You Tube channel has a three part video series of a hearing on the bill, with public testimony, plus several patients who didn’t get to address the committee.NC Med Marijuana Act 1380 Health Comm Hearing, pt. 1

 GAHeadline: June 21, 2009 – Georgia Gets A Medical Marijuana Green Light– Georgia and South Carolina already have basic recognition of medical marijuana on their books, but no legal access. Can they be far behind?  The medical Cannabis juggernaut rolls on!

FredDglssThose who profess to favor freedom, and yet depreciate agitation, are men who want crops without plowing up the ground. They want rain without thunder and lightning. They want the ocean without the awful roar of its waters. This struggle may be a moral one; or it may be a physical one; or it may be both moral and physical; but it must be a struggle! Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did, and it never will. Find out just what people will submit to, and you have found out the exact amount of injustice and wrong which will be imposed upon them; and these will continue until they are resisted with either words or blows, or with both. The limits of tyrants are prescribed by the endurance of those whom they oppress.
Frederick Douglass, August 4, 1857.

“My attitude is that if it’s an issue of doctors prescribing medical marijuana… I think that should be appropriate because there really is no difference between that and a doctor prescribing morphine or anything else”.…Raiding clinics “would be a waste of federal funds.” – Candidate Barak Obama, March, 2008

scalesU.S. Attorney General Eric Holder has spoken of a new policy concerning medical marijuana several times in recent weeks. On February 25th, Holder announced to a gathering of DEA agents and to the Chief of the DEA, Michele Leonhart, that what President Obama said during the campaign was now “American policy” – the DEA would no longer raid medical marijuana dispensaries, patients, doctors, clinics and states will be allowed to make their own decisions on medical marijuana.  Then on March 22nd Attorney General Holder reaffirmed he would “not use federal resources to prosecute patients or providers who use marijuana and are within state laws.”

caThe Plight of Charles Lynch
The Charles Lynch case is pivotal in that it is the first trial with national attention to be brought before a federal judge since Attorney General Holder announced “a new American policy.”
Charles was a medical marijuana dispensary owner in Morro Bay, California – sanctioned by both state and local governments, but raided by DEA agents in 2007.  In his federal trial, his lawyers were not allowed to say the words: “medical, medical marijuana, patients, doctors, doctors prescriptions, state sanctioned, local sanctioned or even that California is a medical marijuana state”.  Patients were not allowed speak on Charles Lynch’s behalf if they described their diseases using the words “medical marijuana”.

Headline: Aug 6, 2008 – CA: MorroBay Pot Dispensary Owner Found Guilty of Federal Charges

Last week, ABC’s 20/20 presented a special report by John Stossel examining  Charles Lynch’s story, with commentary from Drew Carey and cancer patient Melissa Etheridge. Here is a rebroadcast posted on Charles Lynch’s You Tube channel:John Stossel with guest Charles C. Lynch

Headline: March 24, 2009 – CA: Shift On Marijuana Policy Delays Sentencing – On March 23 Charles Lynch was scheduled be sentenced by Federal Judge George H. Wu, but uncertainty about the “New American Policy” caused Judge Wu to pospostpone sentencing to allow himself time to ask the Justice Department for a written reply about the new policy.

New Sentencing Date: April 30, 2009

Another documentary featuring the Charles Lynch story aired on CNBC March 15th- Marijuana, Inc, with Al Roker.  A 17 year old with bone cancer, approved by his doctor and father to use medical marijuana, tells how he attempted to testify in support of Charles, but was cut off when he used the words “medical marijuana”, with the Judge saying “such evidence is irrelevant under federal law”.Al Roker Marijuana Inc with Charles C. Lynch

You Can Help!

Friends, we implore you to call the U.S. Attorney Generals office at 202-353-1555 (comment line) 202-514-2001 (office line) and leave a request that  Attorney General Holder encourage Judge Wu to allow all evidence concerning medical marijuana and all character witnesses to speak unrestricted in his courtroom in the Charles Lynch case.  We believe that this is a pivitol case for the “New American Policy”.

Support Charles Lynch at:   www.FriendsOfCCL.com

“Marijuana, in its natural form, is one of the safest therapeutically active substances known to man. It would be unreasonable, arbitrary and capricious for the DEA to continue to stand between those sufferers and the benefits of this substance in light of the evidence in this record.”
– Francis L. Young, DEA’s own Administrative Law Judge, 1988

Fifth Clinical Conference on Cannabis Therapeutics, April 3, 2008  – This bi-annual medical conference, hosted by Patients Out of Time, is a gathering of medical doctors and researchers specializing in medicinal Cannabis (marijuana) and the workings of the Endo-Cannabinoid system – the regulator of many organ systems and processes of the human body.  This year the conference was held in Pacific Grove, California, by the ocean on the Monterrey Peninsula. The enduring sea seemed to underscore the emergence of new science from an old medicine.

The entire conference is currently being edited for posting on the net. In the meantime, I’ve been editing interviews that I conducted with some of the presenters. These can be seen on the Patients Out of Time You Tube Channel.

Today, the sad news of Senator Edward Kennedy’s diagnosis of Glioma, a cancer of the brain that is very hard to treat, compelled me to edit one interview in particular. It was with Paul Armentano, the Deputy Director of NORML (National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws). Paul has done a lot of research on medical Cannabis, having compiled a booklet, “Emerging Clinical Applications for Cannabis & Cannabinoids: A Review of the Scientific Evidence:2000 – 2008” (available as a PDF) on several diseases that are successfully treated with Cannabis, including promising research on Glioma cancer cell lines (See Below) . This job has made Paul one of the few Americans with direct knowledge of some of the cutting edge science emerging out of Europe, Israel and other countries, so people with sick loved ones often call him, after hearing of possible help from Cannabis research. He has to tell these desperate families that few human trials of medical Cannabis therapies have been allowed in this country, with none on the horizon for the likes of exciting research from Spain, where Dr. Manuel Guzman has slowed the growth of brain cancer tumors using THC – a principle Cannabinoid in marijuana. In this video, Paul observes that many of the callers are asking about alternative treatments for Glioma, often incredulous that our government would block research into such an important area. Also, Dr. David Bearman offers observations on fears of patients facing devastating illness:THC Kills Glioma Cancer Cells – Medical Miracles from Europe

Anti-Cancer Properties of THC – Research in Print:
[1] Guzman et al. 1998. Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol induces apoptosis in C6 glioma cells. FEBS Letters 436: 6-10.
[2] Guzman et al. 2000. Anti-tumoral action of cannabinoids: involvement of sustained ceramide accumulation and extracellular signal-regulated kinase activation. Nature Medicine 6: 313-319.

[3] Guzman et al. 2003. Inhibition of tumor angiogenesis by cannabinoids. The FASEB Journal 17: 529-531.

 [4] Massi et al. 2004. Antitumor effects of cannabidiol on human glioma cell lines. Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics Fast Forward 308: 838-845.

[5] Guzman et al. 2004. Cannabinoids inhibit the vascular endothelial growth factor pathways in gliomas. Cancer Research 64: 5617-5623.

 [6] Allister et al. 2005. Cannabinoids selectively inhibit proliferation and induce death of cultured human glioblastoma multiforme cells. Journal of Neurooncology 74: 31-40.

[7] Guzman et al. 2006. A pilot clinical study of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol in patients with recurrent glioblastoma multiforme. British Journal of Cancer.

[8] Parolaro and Massi. 2008. Cannabinoids as a potential new drug therapy for the treatment of gliomas. Expert Reviews of Neurotherapeutics 8: 37-49
[9] Galanti et al. 2007. Delta9-Tetrahydrocannabinol inhibits cell cycle progression in human glioblastoma multiforme cells. Acta Oncologica 12: 1-9.

[10] Calatozzolo et al. 2007. Expression of cannabinoid receptors and neurotrophins in human gliomas. Neurological Sciences 28: 304-310.
 References courtesy of Paul Armentano. You can read more on this subject in his booklet, which also covers MS; Hypertension; GI Disorders; Arthritis; Alzheimer’s; Fibromyalgia; Hepatitus C; ALS; Diabetes; Osteoporosis; and more: 

“Emerging Clinical Applications for Cannabis: A Review of the Scientific Evidence” (2008, NORML Foundation).

Dr. Guzman was scheduled to present his research at the Cannabis Therapeutics Conference, but a family medical emergency prevented his attendance. *** A PDF of Dr. Guzman’s Research *** However, one of the Cannabis Therapeutics’ faculty members, Robert Melamede, PhD eloquently explained the principles involved in the “Global Homeostatic Regulation”of many bodily functions by the Endo-Cannabinoid system, including re-balancing of conditions like auto-immune disorders and cancers, in an interview in his office at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs:Cancer Cure – Cannabis & Cannabinoids,by Robert Melamede,PhD

In the documentary to which I referred during Paul’s interview – “Surviving ALS“, Cathy Jordan experiences the neuroprotective effects of cannabis first hand, as it helps her over-taxed Endo-Cannabinoid system bring her auto-immune disorder (Lou Gehrig’s Disease) under control – moderating “excitotoxicity” and over production of glutamate. Dr. Melamede continues his interview in this chapter, explaining how neuropathic conditions are balanced by Cannabinoids.Surviving ALS with Cannabis, Chapter 3 – with Dr. Melamede

One fascinating aspect of Dr. Manuel Guzman’s work is that, as the tumors being treated are in brain (nerve) tissue, the neuroprotective properties of THC become extremely important. Whereas most cancer treatments cause damage to surrounding tissue (especially crucial in the brain), THC treatments actually protect adjacent non-cancerous nerve tissue. 

In this video from the 3rd Cannabis Therapeutics Conference, Charlottesville, VA, in May of 2004, Dr. Raphael Mechoulam, of the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, looks closely at the science of Cannabinoids in Neuroprotection. Professor Mechoulam was on the team that first isolated THC in 1964.Cannabinoid System in Neuroprotection, Raphael Mechoulam,PhD

 It turns out that the first research into THC’s actions on cancer tumors was done in the U.S., back in 1974 during a government sponsored study seeking to prove the dangers of marijuana. When the results instead showed the promise of THC as a medicinal agent, our government suppressed the results and quietly gave a pharmaceutical company permission to develop a THC pill – now known as Marinol. And the crusade against marijuana continued…

In an age of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act.
George Orwell

 

 

canada.jpegHeadline: March 18.2008 – Hemp Oil Supplier Slams Laws– A man from Nova Scotia, Canada, is attracting world-wide attention from the concentrated medicinal oil he makes from the Cannabis Hemp plant (marijuana).  Rick Simpson founded “Phoenix Tears” to manufacter the concentrated oil – pressed from the female flower tops, not the hemp seed oil now well known for it’s Essential Fatty Acid profile.

“Mr.  Simpson is in an unusual position, because unlike other people engaged in the drug trade, he was not engaged in trafficking for financial gain,” Judge Beaton said Monday.  “He was engaged in an altruistic activity and was firm in his belief that he was helping others.”

rftc.jpg“The resin is the medicine”, says  Simpson, on “Run From the Cure“, a documentary about the amazing healing herb, his battle with the authorities to continue making the medicine for people with “incurable” illnesses and some of the three hundred patients who report “miraculous” cures from many conditions, including cancer. “Run From the Cure – The Rick Simpson Story“, by Tidal Lake Prductions can be viewed in seven parts on You Tube:RUN FROM THE CURE – The Rick Simpson Story (Part 1 of 7)

Phoenix Tears“, being a natural extract of Cannabis flowers, tric-s.jpgfeatures two key ingredients – “Trichomes” – tiny Cannabinoid-laden, crystal-clear stalks sometimes refered to as “Kief”, that bristle like hairs on the mature flowers; and “Terpenes” – medicinal oils that coat the surface of the flower. These oils are now recognized to be a very important component of the therapeutic profile of Cannabis.

ctc1.jpgAt the 2002 Cannabis Therapeutics Conference in Portland OR, Dr. Geoffrey Guy, Founder and President of GW Pharmaceuticals, U.K.,  a company that grows large amounts of high and low THC Cannabis for whole plant extracts, refers to the medicinal value of terpenes and Cannabinoids in his presentation on medicinal strains of Cannabis:Medical Cannabis Strains – Geoffrey Guy, MD

Cannabis Therapeutics Conferences sponsored by Patients Out of Time

Like Rick Simpson, GW Pharmaceuticals is growing Cannabis to extract the concentrated essence of the plant, not a synthetic isolate like Marinol (pure THC). Whole extracts of Cannabis have been trusted for centuries as a safe, effective and amazingly non-toxic herbal medicine. Our ancestors in America knew it well, as Cannabis tinctures and other compounds were in one third of all medical preparations in the 1800’s, making it the most prescribed medicine of that century.

sativa.gifIn 21st century, exciting new science has confirmed the miraculous healing powers of the Cannabis Hemp plant, as well as the “Endo-Cannabinoid system” – the mechanism in all mammals that maintains balance in many systems in the body, including immune; respiratory; neuromuscular; gastrointestinal; reproductive and more.

Dr. Robert Melamede, Professor of Biology at the University of Colorado, eloquently explains the intricate workings of the Endo-Cannabinoid system and it’s role as “homeostatic regulator” – facilitating neurotransmission and balance in inbalanced conditions like auto-immune diseases and cancers.Cancer Cure – Cannabis & Cannabinoids,by Robert Melamede,PhD 

Calling Cannabis a “Miracle Drug”, Dr. Melamede postulates that Cannabinoids from the plant act as a suppliment to the body’s own Cannabinoids, especially when the Endo-Cannabinoid system is over-taxed by biological or biochemical stresses, like the increasing plethora of toxins in our environment that elevate free-radical production.

Ironically, the first commercial end-product from GW Pharmaceuticals, “Sativex, has been licensed for trials and distribution in Canada. Like Rick Simpson’s “Phoenix Tears“, Sativex is a whole plant extract with a remarkable safety profile. However, Rick Simpson faced prosecution for providing Cannabis medicine compassionately, while a corporate pharmaceutical company is allowed to market essentially the same thing for profit.

scales.jpgThis inbalance in justice bodes ill for Canada, whose citizens would benefit from a safe, economical herbal preparations, made with loving care by people with intimate knowledge and experience with the Cannabis Hemp plant. Expensive products like Sativex will be welcomed by the medical community and will undoubtedly be highly effective. But to deny the people equal access to this precious gift from nature – a birthright like all natural medicines – would be nothing short of a sin.

“And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat.”   –  Genesis 1:29 (KJV)

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Cannabinoid Cancer Cure – U.S. Government Knew in 1974!

Seeing the headline out of Germany this week, “New Study Shows Marijuana May Fight Cancer“, I checked if it was Groundhog Day, as I’d heard this before. I flashed all the way back to 1974, when the U.S. government sought to prove something bad about marijuana, only to prove something good instead –mech1964.jpgthat THC inhibited cancer tumor growth! And forward to the 2000, when Dr. Manuel Guzman of Complutense University, Madrid, Spain and his research team announced success in destroying incurable cancer tumors in the brain’s of rats. If that’s not paradigm-shaking enough, surrounding brain tissue was protected, raising amazing possibilities for Cannabinoids used in combination with other cancer therapies and demonstrating their neuroprotective properties. Dr. Guzman has released a fascinating overview of the Madrid studies, available as a PDF,”Cannabinoids: Potential AntiCancer Agents

ctc1.jpgI will get to hear and film Dr. Guzman himself this April in California, when he presents his findings to the Fifth Clinical Conference on Cannabis Therapeutics, hosted by Patients Out of Time. For the meantime, Cannabis TV has posted an interview of Dr. Robert Melamede, biology professor at University of Colorado (Colorado Springs), explaining how the body’s own Endo-Cannabinoid system and plant derived Cannabinoids play a modulatory role as “global homeostatic regulator” in many body systems and their role in cancer tumor growth inhibition. Cancer Cure – Cannabis & Cannabinoids, by Dr. Robert Melamede, PhD

dutch.jpgHeadline: Cannabis Pill On HorizonThe Netherlands– The race is on to corner a potential $5.8 Billion global market for Cannabis-based pharmaceuticals, even as the prohibition of marijuana in Europe escalates and people attempting to use whole, natural Cannabis for medicine continue to be forcibly compelled to use only legal medications.

The United States allowed a marijuana pill to be developed in the early 1980’s. Marinol (dronabinol), synthetic THC, is a “Schedule Three” drug (under the Controlled Substances Act), able to be prescribed for various symptoms, including wasting syndrome associated with chemotherapy and AIDS and chronic pain. Marinol is expensive, marginally effective and makes users uncomfortably “high”, lacking the chemical buffers and balance of the natural plant. Cannabis (marijuana) remains on Schedule One (having no medical use).

ctc1.jpgAt Second Clinical Conference on Cannabis Therapeutics, 2004 in Portland, OR, hosted by Patients Out of Time, Dr. Ethan Russo examines the effectiveness of Marinol in this video segment,  a study of several patients receiving natural marijuana, grown by the U.S. government.Chronic Medical Cannabis Use by U.S. Legal Patients, Part 3

thomas.jpgIf people let government decide what foods they eat and what medicines they take, their bodies will soon be in as sorry a state as are the souls of those who live under tyranny.
– Thomas Jefferson