Cannabinoids 101

Cannabinoids are a diverse set of chemical compounds that bind to special receptors in the human body that make up what is known as the endocannabinoid system. The “key and lock” metaphor is often used to describe this process. The human body possesses specific binding sites (“locks”) on the surface of many cell types, and our body produces several endocannabinoids (“keys”) that bind to these cannabinoid receptors (CB) to activate or “unlock” them.

In 1992, for the first time an endogenous substance which binds to cannabinoid receptors was detected. This substance, known as anandamide, comes from the Sanskrit word “Ananda” for bliss and “amide” due to its chemical structure. A second endocannabinoid was discovered in 1995, 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG). These two endocannabinoids are the best studied so far. Today, it is thought that about 200+ related substances exist, which resemble the endocannabinoids and complement their function in what has been termed the “entourage effect.” Several endocannabinoids do not only bind to cannabinoid receptors, but also to a possible CB3 receptor (the GPR55 receptor), to vanilloid receptors and further receptors.

In addition to endocannabinoids, scientists have now identified cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant (phytocannabinoids) that work to mimic or counteract the effects of some endocannabinoids. Phytocannabinoids and terpenes are manufactured in resin glands (trichomes) present on the flowers and main fan leaves of late-stage cannabis plants. The amount of resin produced and its cannabinoid content varies by plant gender, growing conditions and harvesting time. The chemical stability of cannabinoids in harvested plant material is affected by moisture, temperature, light and storage, but will degrade over time in any storage conditions.

When a cannabinoid causes a receptor to act in the same way as it would to a naturally occurring hormone or neurotransmitter, then it is labeled “agonist.” On the other hand, if the cannabinoid prevents the receptor from binding to the naturally occurring compound, thereby causing the resulting event (e.g., pain, appetite, alertness) to be altered or diminished, it is labeled “antagonist.” Research is mounting to better understand how specific cannabinoids can unlock (or lock in some cases) specific receptors.

Over 100 phytocannabinoids have been identified in the cannabis plant, many of which have documentedmedicinal value. Most are closely related or differ by only a single chemical part. The most talked-about and researched cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant are tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) for its psychoactive properties (“high feeling”) and cannabidiol (CBD) for its healing properties.

Cannabinoids can be administered by smoking, vaporizing, oral ingestion, transdermal patch, intravenous injection, sublingual absorption or rectal suppository.

 

 

Read the full article at Medical Jane.

This Doctor Destroys Cannabis Myths Once And For All

This article was first published on IllegallyHealed.com.

We sat down with founder of Healer.com, Dr. Dustin Sulak, a licensed osteopathic physician, about the most common myths about cannabis, many of which have been sponsored by industries that benefit from the prohibition of cannabis, along with the facts.

Here’s the most common cannabis myths — destroyed:

Cannabis Kills Brain Cells And Lowers IQ

Interestingly, numerous studies have proven cannabis does just the opposite — it promotes the growth and development of new brain cells [1]. No other class of compounds has demonstrated the neuroprotective effects of cannabis. Very promising animal studies show that treating brain injuries, including newborn babies lacking oxygen [2], victims of stroke, and head trauma, all sustain less damage and heal faster if they are given cannabinoids, the substances found in cannabis, or their synthetic counterparts [3]. Cannabinoids also protect the brain from slower forms of injury, like Alzheimer’s and multiple sclerosis [4], especially when used in the correct dosage.

While cannabis can cause some temporary cognitive changes, such as a decrease in short term memory, these changes are reversible when an adult stops using cannabis [5].

Cannabis Makes You “Stoned” Or “High”

Smoking or ingesting marijuana can cause a psychoactive effect, which most people describe as a pleasant euphoria and enhancement of the senses, but it can include less desirable features like sedation and paranoia. Pleasant or uncomfortable, a growing number of patients want the medical benefits of cannabis without any intoxication or impairment in function — they want to use it while working, safely driving, and more. This is both possible, and practical.

After decades of selective breeding to produce the most intoxicating strains of cannabis, sought after by recreational users and dealers in the underground market, medical cannabis breeders are now producing strains that emphasize the health benefits and reduce or eliminate the psychoactivity [6].

 

 

Read the full article here.

Cannabis Root Is A Buried Treasure

“Given our exhaustive use of the hemp and Cannabis plant – making use of the fiber, leaves, flowers, seeds and resin – it seems strange that there should be any element that has thus far escaped the notice of the modern herbalist. Perhaps because it usually spends its days hidden beneath the soil, the humble root is vastly under-explored, compared to the other components of the plant. However, looking at pre-prohibition medical- and veterinary literature, it is apparent that our ancestors (as with so many lost secrets and traditions) knew very well about its specific healing properties.”

Our Friend Bob has volunteered to analyze the cannabis root study conducted by Blair Van Pelt to understand the explanation as to the components that are compiled in cannabis root.

He writes; I took another nice read through Pelt and Riesenberg study. They found no alkaloids in the 26.06 grams of dried roots from the 9 cannabis sativa plants (variety Bedrocan) that they used in their study but they DID find the Glycoside, 3 different kinds of fatty acids, sugars, and 2 different lipids. 1 lipid was unidentified and the other was identified but they weren’t sure if it was biologically active. They expected to find alkaloids in the root but didn’t in this study.

 

Read the full article at Hemp-Eaze.

O.penVAPE Expands its Cannabis Brand to Nevada

DENVER, CO, Mar 07, 2016 (Marketwired via COMTEX) — O.penVAPE, the world’s largest cannabis brand, in partnership with TGIG, a Nevada medical cannabis enterprise with a state-of-the-art production and cultivation facility, has begun producing and distributing O.penVAPE’s best-selling CO2 extracted cannabis oils.

Denver-based O.penVAPE licenses products and manufacturing services in the medical and adult-use cannabis industry. Through its network of licensees in nine states and Jamaica, it is the largest extractor of cannabis oil in the United States.

Demetri Kouretas, CEO of TGIG, said its valuable relationship with O.penVAPE will make it possible for patients to obtain cannabis oil processed through CO2 extraction, a pure and safer form of cannabis oil. His company has begun wholesaling O.penVAPE products to current operating dispensaries and plans to make O.penVAPE products available to all of southern Nevada’s 48 dispensaries by the end of the year.

“Employing the science and technology that O.penVAPE has perfected, we are manufacturing superior cannabis oil for customers who have been requesting a way to ingest cannabis in safer measured doses,” Kouretas said. “We researched partnerships with other manufacturers and selected O.penVAPE because we share with O.penVAPE’s leaders similar views about access to medical cannabis. We simply got along well.”

Chris Driessen, Chief Business Development Officer of O.penVAPE, said TGIG is one of two Nevada enterprises that have entered into licensee agreements with O.penVAPE. TGIG holds four Nevada state licenses, making it possible for them to cultivate cannabis, produce O.penVAPE cannabis oil, and distribute and sell cannabis flower and O.penVAPE products. Per Nevada law, TGIG’s license covers the southern portion of the state, which includes the cities of Las Vegas, North Las Vegas, Henderson, Mesquite, Laughlin and Clark and Nye counties.

 

 

Read full article here.

Ten Minutes to a Not Guilty Verdict in San Diego Medical Marijuana Concentrate Case – Or, How to Ruin Bonnie Dumanis’s Weekend

San Diego, CA It is hard to say exactly when the San Diego District Attorney’s Office lost their cannabis extraction case against legal patient John Mazula. His friends would say it was when the DA chose John to victimize; many activists say it was when John hired brilliant cannabis defense attorney, Michael Cindrich. Courtroom spectators might say it was directly after Mr. Cindrich crushed it during closing arguments yesterday afternoon. Or, right after cannabis scientist Andrew Pham’s expert testimony made the DEA chemists look like goofballs. And, when I asked the jury foreman, he said it was when prosecutor Matt Carberry rested his case without having proved any of what was alleged.

Yesterday after closing arguments the jury left the courtroom to begin deliberations at 4:04PM. We all went our separate ways with plans to return today to wait for a verdict. At 4:30 a text came in that the jury had already reached one. Stomachs churned. It was too fast! Or, was it? I was in my car on the freeway. I was desperate to return to hear the decision read aloud in court. I was scared for John and his wife Tracy. How could the jury have reached anything but a not guilty verdict, I asked. But this is conservative El Cajon, I answered. Our chapter chair Marcus Boyd, available so many times for me on the phone through this case, helped talk me through the shock and fear. I’m ashamed of the way I drove.

I didn’t have to suffer for long because 15 minutes later John texted me “not guilty” and with that the two year long ordeal for the Mazula family was over. It would be all fun and celebration from here and I wondered why we ever worried.

 

Read the full article at Americans For Safe Access.

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California Unites Around One Legalization Initiative?

By Marijuana Politics Staff  December 8, 2015 at 10:19 am

Anyone paying attention to the California cannabis legalization effort knows that competing measures have been vying for support and there sources necessary to pass a successful statewide measure. While California has the proper voting demographics to end marijuana prohibition at the ballot box, various factors, including just the sheer size of the state, pose serious difficulties that must be overcome. Uniting around one legalization initiative will greatly enhance the chances of success.

While it is naive to think that there will be complete unity, a press release issued today seems to point to a growing consensus to rally behind the Adult Use of Marijuana Act, supported by billionaire entrepreneur Sean Parker. Reportedly, several board members of the Coalition for Cannabis Policy Reform, who have backed the ReformCA measure, have switched their endorsement. Of course, we’ll have more as news develops in California. The press release:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION:  Tuesday, December 8, 2015 

Jason Kinney (916) 806-2719

SIX BOARD MEMBERS OF COALITION FOR CANNABIS POLICY REFORM OFFICIALLY ENDORSE THE CONSENSUS “ADULT USE OF MARIJUANA ACT” 

Dr. Larry Bedard, MD, withdraws as official co-proponent of the Reform CA measure & joins growing coalition in support of Adult Use Act   

SACRAMENTO – Today, in the wake of a majority of the Board of Directors for the Coalition for Cannabis Policy Reform (CCPR) agreeing to vote to withdraw its own measure (known as “ReformCA”), six members of the CCPR Board immediately announced their endorsement of the recently-amended statewide ballot measure known as the Adult Use of Marijuana Act (AUMA) to control, regulate and tax marijuana.

They include:

  • David Bronner, CEO of North America’s top-selling brand of natural soaps
  • Nate Bradley, Executive Director, California Cannabis Industry Association
  • Stacia Cosner, Deputy Director, Students for Sensible Drug Policy
  • Neill Franklin, Executive Director, Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP)
  • Antonio Gonzalez, President of the Latino Voters League and the William C. Velasquez Institute in Los Angeles AND
  • Richard Lee, founder of Oaksterdam University in Oakland

In addition, Dr. Larry Bedard, former President of the American College of Emergency Physicians, has agreed to withdraw as an official co-proponent of the ReformCA measure and instead support AUMA.

Over the weekend, a majority of the CCPR Board formally agreed to vote to withdraw the ReformCA measure from the ballot qualification process.

“We have carefully reviewed amendments submitted by the proponents of the Adult Use of Marijuana Act, and we’re convinced it’s time to endorse that initiative and unite everyone behind a single, consensus measure to achieve a legal, regulated system, which a majority of voters have consistently said they want,” said Bronner.

“This amended measure strikes a thoughtful balance between civil liberties and protecting public safety and the safety and health of our children,” said Franklin.  “I’m pleased to endorse it and have every confidence it will pass in November.”

“As amended, this measure reflects the voices and vision of communities all across California,” said Gonzalez.  “This represents best practices and the best chance California has to replace a failed system of prohibition with an effective, legal and regulated system that protects children, workers and small businesses.”

This follows last week’s announcement by Lee, an award-winning founding father of California’s marijuana reform movement, the founder and former President of Oaksterdam, and the lead proponent of Proposition 19, that he was supporting the Adult Use of Marijuana Act (or AUMA), saying “It’s important that we all get together to support one initiative.”

The Adult Use measure is based on the collaborative input of hundreds of state and local stakeholders and the recommendations of the Lieutenant Governor’s Blue Ribbon Commission on Marijuana Policy – and it builds on the landmark regulatory structure for medical marijuana recently passed by a bipartisan majority of the Legislature and signed by Governor Brown (SB 643, AB 266 and AB 243).

It includes strict safeguards to protect children, explicit provisions preventing marijuana monopolies, and unprecedented new investments in teen drug prevention and treatment programs and environmental and water restoration.

-# # #-

Yesterday’s press release announcing recent amendments to the Adult Use Measure:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:                                       FOR FURTHER INFORMATION:  Monday, December 7, 2015                                              Jason Kinney (916) 806-2719

PROPONENTS OF LEADING MARIJUANA INITIATIVE AMEND TO STRENGTHEN SAFEGUARDS FOR CHILDREN, WORKERS & SMALL BUSINESS – ALONG WITH STRICT LOCAL CONTROL & ANTI-MONOPOLY PROVISIONS   

Informed by input from hundreds of stakeholders – including local officials, health and policy experts, environmental leaders, small business owners, worker representatives and social justice advocates – amendments bring measure closer in line with recently-passed bipartisan legislation 

SACRAMENTO – Proponents of the leading statewide ballot measure to control, regulate and tax adult use of marijuana announced today that they have filed consensus amendments to significantly strengthen safeguards for children, workers, local governments and small businesses and include even stricter anti-monopoly provisions and the toughest warning label and marketing-to-kids laws in the nation.

Amendments to the measure (known as “the Adult Use of Marijuana Act”) were developed based on input and recommendations received over the last 35 days from hundreds of engaged citizens and organizations representing local government, health and policy experts, environmental leaders, small farmers and business owners, worker representatives and social justice advocates.

The amendments bring the measure even closer in line with the Lieutenant Governor’s Blue Ribbon Commission on Marijuana Policy and the new medical marijuana laws recently passed by a bipartisan majority of the Legislature and signed by Governor Brown (SB 643, AB 266 and AB 243).

The amendments specifically strengthen and clarify four central objectives of the AUMA measure:

  1. To protect children and discourage teen drug use;
  2. To maintain local control and local government authority over marijuana commercial activity;
  3. To implement strong worker and labor protections for those employed in this growing industry;
  4. To protect small businesses and ensure state regulators have the authority to prevent monopolies and anti-competitive practices.

“These amendments reflect a collaborative process of public and expert engagement and make an extremely strong measure even stronger,” said Dr. Donald O. Lyman, MD, award-winning physician and former Chief of the Division of Chronic Disease and Injury Control at the California Department of Public Health, who is the measure’s lead proponent.  “This measure now includes even more protections for children, workers, small business, and local governments while ensuring strict prohibitions on marketing to kids and monopoly practices.”

New amendments to AUMA include:

Safeguarding California’s Children

  • Mandates the toughest and most explicit warning labels on marijuana products, including an American Medical Association-recommended message that marijuana use during pregnancy or breastfeeding may be harmful.
  • Enhances the strict ban on advertising to minors to clarify that marketing to minors is also strictly prohibited, as is all health-related advertising for non-medical marijuana.
  • Requires a comprehensive study to determine effectiveness of the packaging and labeling requirements and advertising and marketing restrictions on preventing underage access to non-medical marijuana.
  • Provides funding for a public information campaign, emphasizing that marijuana remains illegal for anyone under the age of 21.
  • Accelerates funding for expert outcome research on the effects of the new law, including its impact on minors and whether teen use decreases (as it has in other states with legal, regulated systems such as Colorado).

Maintaining Local Control

  • Aligns with the bipartisan medical marijuana legislation to provide complete local control over non-medical marijuana businesses within their jurisdiction, including the authority to ban commercial marijuana activity by ordinance.
  • Ensures that local governments which allow commercial marijuana businesses to operate have the authority to determine the time, manner and location of those businesses within their jurisdiction.
  • Ensures that local governments have the authority to establish their own taxes on medical and non-medical marijuana consistent with existing state law.  Explicit authority to do so is granted to counties.
  • Requires state licensing authorities to take action to suspend or revoke a state marijuana business license when notified that a corresponding local license has been revoked, ensuring businesses must remain in compliance with local laws to operate.

Protecting Workers in an Expanding Industry

  • Requires state regulators to set specific safety standards for drivers and vehicles that are employed in the legal commercial distribution of marijuana.
  • Clarifies that the labor peace agreements included in the medical marijuana legislation will also extend to this new law.
  • Clarifies that labor violations are grounds for disciplinary action against a marijuana business licensee, including potential suspension or revocation.
  • Clarifies that all administrative costs of the new law must be fully funded, including reasonable costs for state agencies to oversee workplace safety.
  • Mandates the state comprehensively study which workplace safety standards are necessary to fully protect marijuana workers, including against risks unique to the industry. 

Preventing Monopolies and Encouraging Small Business Growth

  • To allow smaller growers to establish themselves in a legal, regulated market, large cultivation licenses (as defined by the medical marijuana legislation) for non-medical marijuana will not be issued for the first five years the new law is in effect.
  • Only after those first five years can large cultivation licenses be issued at the discretion of state regulators but they must include the same restrictions on vertical integration that are contained in the medical marijuana legislation.
  • Strengthens opportunities for minority-owned businesses to enter the legal, regulated marijuana market.
  • Sets a September 1, 2016 deadline for existing medical marijuana businesses to come into compliance with current law and qualify for priority licensing under AUMA, providing greater access for existing small businesses to enter the legal, regulated market.
  • Requires public universities in California to conduct a study and issue recommendations on whether additional protections are needed to prevent unlawful monopolies or anti-competitive behavior.  Additional technical amendments and suggested changes were included to provide increased clarity to state regulators.

Read More: marijuanapolitics.com

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Remember The Reporter Who Quit On Air For Cannabis? This Is What She’s Doing Now

By SERA JANE GHALY on DECEMBER 6, 2015

You might never guess what the broadcast reporter who famously quit her job on air last September is just about to launch.

She said on Friday that she will be opening a cannabis club in Anchorage, Alaska, with the intention of turning it into a fully fledged seed to sale business by the end of 2016.

Charlo Greene did, after all, quit her job on air as an attempt to publicize her movement to legalize pot in Alaska. She hasn’t failed to deliver since then pursuing the movement of legal marijuana in Alaska.

Alaska Cannabis Club

 

Greene’s business will be called the Alaska Cannabis Club, and at the moment is the club house to medical marijuana users in Anchorage. Until recreational marijuana was legal in Alaska, Greene was using the space with other residents to share their own personal medical marijuana strains, which they were growing under the Alaskan law at the time.

Since marijuana has been legalized recreationally, they have been able to use the space as a full sharing network of local growers. They are allowed to share up to one ounce of their sativa or indica marijuana legally under the Alaskan legal cannabis policy. She also hosts grow yourself classes, workshops and events. And without having to say so, the property is a place for residents to get high.

By 2016, there should be licensed shops selling marijuana all over Alaska. Greene hopes to expand her business then to a complete seed to sale business. She even wants to include a home delivery service associated with her business website.

“Fuck it. I quit!”

 

Charlo Greene had what some might consider an extremely esteemed position as a broadcast reporter, but extravagantly and famously quit her job on air. She smoked pot as a teenager and used it to get off a destructive path with alcohol. She was then able to graduate college with exceptional grades. When she began to feel that the strength behind the legalization movement in Alaska was slipping away, she planned an elaborate on-camera revival. She expressed that she had always wanted to be a part of this movement publicly.

“I … will be dedicating all of my energy toward fighting for freedom and fairness, which begins with legalizing marijuana here in Alaska.  And as for this job, well, not that I have a choice but, fuck it, I quit,” she said on a live television broadcast in September 2014.

Not wanting to be defeated by her compromise as a broadcaster, she did an exceptionally brave thing and splashed out on camera exactly how she felt. She has been admired by the stoner community in Anchorage, Alaska ever since for her behavior and has become an integral part of the cannabis community there.

Her last name is even Greene. She probably feels it would be doing a complete dissatisfaction to her family name not to be a part of this cause!

Here she is quitting on live TV:

Read More: thestonerscookbook.com

Cannabis Jobs Report November 2015

By Matt Jones on 

Every month the Cannabis Jobs Board releases the jobs report for the previous month. The Cannabis Jobs Board gathers almost every cannabis job posted on the internet and organizes them in a searchable dashboard. This allows them to gather a ton of useful data, and these videos make it really easy to see where the jobs are and what  jobs are in demand. The report had input from WeedHire who is one of the original cannabis job sites. Also, this month you will notice instead of focusing on percentage of growth, we have the total number of job postings for the top ten states.

Read More: thcuniversity.org