Author Interviews, Cannabis, Columbia, Gender Differences / 06.09.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_51156" align="alignleft" width="133"]Morgan Philbin, PhD MHS Assistant Professor Department of Sociomedical Sciences Columbia University School of Public Health Dr. Morgan Philbin[/caption] Morgan Philbin, PhD MHS Assistant Professor Department of Sociomedical Sciences Columbia University School of Public Health MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Marijuana is the most frequently used substance in the United States (US) after alcohol and tobacco. In 2017, 15.3% of the US population ages 18 and up reported past-year marijuana use (MU) and 9.9% past month use. Individuals who identify as lesbian, gay, or bisexual (LGB), also report higher levels of marijuana use and marijuana use disorder than their heterosexual counterparts. Researchers have begun to explore potentially modifiable factors, such as state-level marijuana policies, that affect marijuana use and related outcomes at the population-level and within subgroups—though as of yet not among sexual minority populations. We therefore examined whether LGB individuals living in states with medical marijuana laws (MMLs) have higher levels of marijuana use and marijuana use disorder compared to LGB individuals in states without MMLs.
Author Interviews, Cannabis / 31.08.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_51113" align="alignleft" width="133"]Angela Birnbaum, Ph.D., FAES Professor, Director of Graduate Studies Experimental and Clinical Pharmacology College of Pharmacy University of Minnesota Dr. Birnbaum[/caption] Angela Birnbaum, Ph.D., FAES Professor, Director of Graduate Studies Experimental and Clinical Pharmacology College of Pharmacy University of Minnesota  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Little was known about the effect food has on the amount of cannabidiol (CBD) that is actually absorbed into the body. Because of various state laws, CBD preparations vary from state to state. In Minnesota, however, the law only allows pure forms of cannabidiol providing a consistent supply of product including a purified CBD capsule formulation. Due to its pharmacological properties a low amount of a CBD dose reaches the blood stream and the effect of food had not been well described. Our study was done to determine the amount of cannabidiol that is absorbed with food as compared to an empty stomach at doses used in epilepsy patients, which can be higher than the dose often used for other conditions.  
Addiction, Alcohol, Author Interviews, Cannabis, Cocaine, Methamphetamine, Opiods / 21.08.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_50985" align="alignleft" width="133"]Greg Midgette, PhD Assistant Professor Department of Criminology and Criminal Justice University of Maryland Dr. Midgette[/caption] Greg Midgette, PhD Assistant Professor Department of Criminology and Criminal Justice University of Maryland MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: This report estimates marijuana, cocaine, heroin, and methamphetamine use in the U.S. between 2006 and 2016 on three dimensions: the number of past-month chronic users per year, where "chronic" has previously been defined as consuming the drug at least four days in the past month, expenditure per drug among those users, and consumption of each drug. These measures are meant to aid the public and policy makers' understanding of changes in drug use, outcomes, and policies.  
Addiction, Author Interviews, Cannabis, Columbia, JAMA, Opiods / 18.07.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_28490" align="alignleft" width="165"]Silvia S. Martins, MD, PHD Associate Professor of Epidemiology Department of Epidemiology Mailman School Of Public Health Columbia University New York, NY 10032 Dr. Silvia Martins[/caption] Silvia S. Martins, MD, PHD Associate Professor of Epidemiology Department of Epidemiology Mailman School Of Public Health Columbia University  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Prior studies have suggested t6hat medical marijuana legalization might play a role in decreasing opioid use. We aimed to test this hypothesis using individual level data on nonmedical use of prescription opioids and opioid use disorder  from the US National Survey on Drug Use and Health. 
Author Interviews, Cannabis, JAMA, Pediatrics / 09.07.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_50165" align="alignleft" width="200"]D. Mark Anderson, Ph.D. Associate Professor Department of Agricultural Economics and Economics Montana State University, IZA, and NBER Dr. Anderson[/caption] D. Mark Anderson, Ph.D. Associate Professor Department of Agricultural Economics and Economics Montana State University, IZA, and NBER MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?  Response: Using data from the Youth Risk Behavior Surveys for the period 1993-2017, we explore the effect medical and recreational marijuana laws have on teen use. We find that medical marijuana laws (MMLs) are not associated with teen marijuana consumption, but recreational marijuana laws (RMLs) are actually negatively associated with teen use. 
Author Interviews, Cannabis, Pediatrics / 21.06.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_49903" align="alignleft" width="133"]Marilyn Cyr, Ph.D., Psy.D. Postdoctoral Research Scientist Division of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry New York State Psychiatric Institute Columbia University Medical Center New York, NY 10032 Dr. Cyr[/caption] Marilyn Cyr, Ph.D., Psy.D. Postdoctoral Research Scientist Division of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry New York State Psychiatric Institute Columbia University Medical Center New York, NY 10032 MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: A hallmark feature of problematic substance use is compulsive drug-seeking long after the drug is no longer experienced as pleasurable and despite the associated adverse consequences of this behavior. Disturbances in cognitive control—an ensemble of processes by which the mind governs behaviors, regulates impulses and guides decisions based on goals—are believed to be involved in the initiation and maintenance of the compulsive drug-seeking that characterizes problematic substance use. Most adults with problematic substance use began having problems with drugs and alcohol in adolescence, a developmental period during which the neural circuits underlying cognitive control processes continue to mature. As such, the adolescent brain may be particularly vulnerable to the effects of substance use, and particularly cannabis, the most commonly used recreational drug by teenagers worldwide.
Addiction, Author Interviews, Cannabis, Pediatrics, Smoking, Tobacco, Tobacco Research / 30.04.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_48927" align="alignleft" width="120"]Joan S. Tucker, Ph.D.Senior Behavioral ScientistRAND CorporationSanta Monica, CA Dr. Tucker[/caption] Joan S. Tucker, Ph.D. Senior Behavioral Scientist RAND Corporation Santa Monica, CA MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?   Response: In light of young adults’ expanding access to cannabis through legalization for recreational use, there has been growing interest in the co-use of cannabis with tobacco/nicotine products.  Although existing data show that young adults who use cannabis products also tend to use tobacco/nicotine products, little is known about how these products are typically used together. Existing research on co-use has mostly focused on combustible products, not accounting for the recent proliferation in cannabis and tobacco/nicotine product types and methods of use (e.g., vaping). Further, not much is known about whether there are important differences between types of co-use (e.g., using both products on the same occasion, one right after another, but not mixing them vs. using both products by mixing them in the same delivery device) in terms of heaviness of use, consequences from use, or associations with young adult functioning. This study was designed as an important first step toward understanding cannabis and tobacco/nicotine co-use behavior among young adults and addressing these gaps in the research literature.
Accidents & Violence, Author Interviews, Cannabis / 26.04.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Angela Eichelberger, Ph.D. Senior Research Scientist Insurance Institute for Highway Safety MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Dr. Romano and Dr. Kelley-Baker have previously studied the problem of child endangerment in alcohol-related crashes. In the United States, each year, about 200 children die and another 4,000 are injured while being driven by a drinking adult. For this study, we wanted to take the opportunity to look at the prevalence of alcohol and cannabis use among drivers who participated in a roadside survey in Washington State. To our knowledge, this is the first study to examine cannabis use among drivers transporting a child.
Author Interviews, Cannabis, Psychological Science, Social Issues, Weight Research / 24.04.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: "Chocolate Brownies" by Kurtis Garbutt is licensed under CC BY 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0Jessica S. Kruger PhD Clinical Assistant Professor Department of Community Health and Health Behavior School of Public Health and Health Professions University of Buffalo Daniel J. Kruger PhD Adjunct Faculty Associate, Population Studies Center. Michigan's Population Studies Center  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: The legal environment for cannabis is changing rapidly and an increasing proportion of people are using cannabis for medical and recreational purposes. All policy and practice should be informed by science, yet there is a large gap between evidence and existing practices, and the current scope of research on cannabis users is limited. Public Health has the responsibility of protecting the public, maximizing benefits and minimizing harm in any area. However, the Public Health approach to cannabis has largely been limited to a focus on abstinence, and Federal regulations have restricted the scope of cannabis-related research.
Author Interviews, Cannabis, JAMA, Mental Health Research, OBGYNE / 28.03.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_48215" align="alignleft" width="160"]Jeremy FineB.A. in Philosophy, Neuroscience, and PsychologyWashington University in St. Louis, Class of 2019 Jeremy Fine[/caption] Jeremy Fine B.A. in Philosophy, Neuroscience, and Psychology Washington University in St. Louis, Class of 201 MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Alongside increasingly permissive marijuana use attitudes and laws, the prevalence of marijuana use among pregnant mothers has increased substantially (by 75% between 2002 and 2016), with some evidence that pregnant women may be using cannabis to combat pregnancy-related nausea. Our data came from the Adolescent Brain Cognitive Development (ABCD) Study, which included over 4,000 subjects with data on maternal marijuana use during pregnancy. Our main finding was that the children of mothers who used marijuana after learning they were pregnant had a small but significant increase in risk for psychosis in their future.
Accidents & Violence, Author Interviews, Cannabis / 22.02.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_47609" align="alignleft" width="132"]Lonnie M. Schaible PhD Associate Professor School of Public Affairs University of Colorado Denver, CO Dr. Schaible[/caption] Lonnie M. Schaible PhD Associate Professor School of Public Affairs University of Colorado Denver, CO MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Following legalization of recreational marijuana use in Colorado, strong -- but unsubstantiated -- claims were being made about crime surrounding marijuana dispensaries.  We wanted to know what the data would show.  We were especially interested in determining whether the addition of recreational facilities had any effects above and beyond those which might exist for medical dispensaries.  To better capture the dynamic landscape of marijuana legalization, this is the first study to control for the prior existence of medical dispensaries and assess how effects of both of these types of establishments changed over time.
Author Interviews, Cannabis, University of Michigan / 17.01.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_46988" align="alignleft" width="175"]Daniel J. Kruger, PhD Research Assistant Professor University of Michigan Dr. Kruger[/caption] Daniel J. Kruger, PhD Research Assistant Professor University of Michigan MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: We study health-related behaviors, such as diet and the consumption of caffeine and alcohol. Given the recent trends in legalization of cannabis for medical and even recreational purposes, we were concerned with the narrow focus of current public health efforts regarding cannabis. Although some in the field take a harm-reduction approach to substance use, too many efforts focus solely on abstinence. These programs are a legacy from the era of prohibition, and we know that there are disadvantages to such a restricted scope in public health. For example, municipalities that eliminated or blocked accurate and effective sex education had increases in teenage pregnancy rates. There are so many public health-related aspects of cannabis, beyond risks and adverse effects, which need to be addressed by systematic scientific research. Because of the legal history of cannabis, there is little integration with the mainstream health care system. The focus of the current study was investigating how medical cannabis users perceived medical cannabis in comparison to pharmaceutical drugs and other aspects of the mainstream health care system and how they navigated they relationships between these currently separate systems
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Cannabis, JAMA, Mental Health Research, Pediatrics / 19.12.2018

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_46574" align="alignleft" width="132"]Sharon Levy, MD, MPH Director, Adolescent Substance Use and Addiction Program Boston Children's Hospital Associate Professor of Pediatrics Harvard Medical School Dr. Levy[/caption] Sharon Levy, MD, MPH Director, Adolescent Substance Use and Addiction Program Boston Children's Hospital Associate Professor of Pediatrics Harvard Medical School  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: ​For this study we analyzed data that were collected as part of a larger survey study that recruited a sample of adolescents who were coming to the doctor's office for routine medical care.  We asked them a lot of questions about their health, school, extracurricular activities, plans for the future, substance use patterns and problems associated with use among other things. The main finding was that among the participants who reported marijuana use in the past year, many of them, more than 40%, said that they had experienced either an hallucination, or paranoia/anxiety related to their use. Kids who used more frequently and those who met criteria for a substance use disorder were more likely to experience these symptoms, as were those who had symptoms of depression
Author Interviews, Cannabis, University of Pennsylvania / 02.12.2018

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_36623" align="alignleft" width="200"]Dan Romer PhD Research director, Annenberg Public Policy Center Director of its Adolescent Communication Institute University of Pennsylvania Dr. Daniel Romer[/caption] Daniel Romer PhD Annenberg Public Policy Center The University of Pennsylvania Philadelphia, PA MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Previous research has found some troubling relations between adolescent cannabis use and subsequent increases in conduct problems and other unhealthy consequences.  These studies were done in New Zealand in the late 90’s and we wanted to re-examine those relationships using more contemporary data in the US. We had data on 364 adolescents who were followed from age 13 to 19 in Philadelphia that could provide a more up to date picture of the effects of using cannabis on one important outcome, conduct disorder.  We also wanted to use more sensitive methods than had been used in prior research that would enable us to examine reciprocal relations between cannabis use and c (CP).  That is, it might be the case that youth with CP are prone to using cannabis and that this helps to explain why there appears to be a relation over time between cannabis use and CP rather than cannabis use leading to CP. Our findings supported that hypothesis.  There was no prospective relation between changes in cannabis use and subsequent changes in conduct problems.  Instead, changes in conduct problems were found to predict changes in use of cannabis.  Youth with conduct problems also affiliated more with peers who used cannabis, adding further to their own use.  There was also no evidence that youth who used cannabis sought out peers who used it apart from the effects of CP. Finally, both use of cannabis and  conduct problems predicted subsequent development of a mild cannabis use disorder (CUD). 
Author Interviews, Cannabis, Cognitive Issues, OBGYNE / 05.11.2018

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_45711" align="alignleft" width="133"]Ryan J. McLaughlin, PhD Assistant Professor Department of Integrative Physiology & Neuroscience College of Veterinary Medicine Washington State University Pullman, WA 99164-7620 Dr. McLaughlin[/caption] Ryan J. McLaughlin, PhD Assistant Professor Department of Integrative Physiology & Neuroscience College of Veterinary Medicine Washington State University Pullman, WA 99164-7620 MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?  Response: The use of cannabis during pregnancy is a growing health concern, yet the long-term cognitive ramifications for developing offspring remain largely unknown. Human studies exploring the long-term effects of maternal cannabis use have been sparse for several reasons, including the length and cost of such studies, as well as the fact that experimentally assigning mothers to smoke cannabis during pregnancy is obviously ethically impractical. Animal models of maternal cannabis use have been advantageous in this respect, but they have been limited by the drugs used (synthetic cannabinoids vs. THC vs. cannabis plant) and the way that they are administered. In our study, we used a more translationally relevant animal model of maternal cannabis use that exposes pregnant rat dams to whole plant cannabis extracts using the intra-pulmonary route of administration that is most common to human users. Our preliminary data indicate that twice-daily exposure to a high-dose cannabis extract during pregnancy may produce deficits in cognitive flexibility in adult rat offspring. Importantly, these rats did not experience general learning deficits, as they performed comparably to non-exposed offspring when required to follow a cue in their environment that dictate reinforcer delivery. Instead, deficits were observed only when rats were required to disregard this previous cue-based strategy and adopt a new egocentric spatial strategy in order to continue receiving the sugar reinforcers.
Author Interviews, Cannabis, Kidney Disease / 29.10.2018

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: "Big bags of medical #marijuana on Cannabis Culture News LIVE - watch now on www.pot.tv" by Cannabis Culture is licensed under CC BY 2.0Praveen Kumar Potukuchi, B.Pharm, MS The University of Tennessee Health Science Center MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Several case reports have indicated that synthetic cannabinoid use is associated with acute kidney injury (AKI). However, it is unclear whether similar adverse effects could occur with medicinal or recreational cannabis use. Previous research has shown that the use of medical marijuana /cannabis for an average of two weeks resulted in no serious adverse effects and no incidence of AKI. However, there are no studies which investigated the effects of marijuana/cannabis use on the incidence of AKI in patients with advanced CKD.
Accidents & Violence, Author Interviews, Cannabis / 28.10.2018

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_45541" align="alignleft" width="200"]Prof. Mark A. R. Kleiman PhD Affiliated Faculty, NYU Wagner; Professor of Public Policy NYU Marron Institute of Urban Management Prof. Kleiman[/caption] Prof. Mark A. R. Kleiman PhD Affiliated Faculty, NYU Wagner; Professor of Public Policy NYU Marron Institute of Urban Management MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?  Response: As state after state legalizes the sale of cannabis, the question of cannabis-impaired driving is getting more attention. There is evidence that the practice has become more common, both because cannabis use - and especially heavy, frequent use - has increased and because a distressingly large fraction of cannabis users believe, falsely, that stoned driving is safe. The natural response to the problem is to treat cannabis on a par with alcohol: fairly severe criminal penalties for impaired driving, with impairment defined by a specific level of the drug in the body. The paper argues that this would be a mistake, for four independent reasons: - While cannabis makes driving riskier, it does so by about a factor of two, with no strongly observed dependency on dosage. Alcohol, by contrast, has a steep dose-effect curve. At the legal limit of 0.08% blood alcohol content by weight, the relative risk of drunk driving is at least eight; at 0.15%, which is fairly common, the relative risk has been estimated at 30-50. So there is no justification for punishing stoned driving as severely as we punish drunk driving. - The lack of evidence of a strong dose-effect relationship suggests that a legal standard based on the content of cannabinoids in blood may not be appropriate. - Even if a blood standard were valid, the lack of a breath test would make enforcing that standard nearly impossible as a practical matter. - The long and unpredictable course of cannabis metabolism means that frequent users will be at risk of failing a drug test even when they are neither subjectively intoxicated nor objectively impaired. Worse, they would have no way of judging in advance whether or not driving would be legal. The result would be a re-criminalization of cannabis use through the back door. 
Author Interviews, Cannabis / 25.10.2018

[caption id="attachment_45471" align="alignleft" width="200"]Jonathan Rothbard, MA, PhD Steinman Lab Stanford Medicine Co-founder Katexco Pharmaceuticals Dr. Rothbard[/caption] MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Jonathan Rothbard, MA, PhD Steinman Lab Stanford Medicine Co-founder Katexco Pharmaceuticals MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this new company? How did Katexco get its name? Response: Researchers with Stanford University, Jonathan Rothbard and Lawrence Steinman, formed Katexco Pharmaceuticals. Katexco will focus on developing oral therapies for inflammatory diseases based on cannabis and nicotine receptors. Katexco will work to develop the first drug to focus on a key receptor on immune cells that are involved in inflammatory disease. The first primary target indications include gastrointestinal disorders like Crohn’s disease, gout and multiple sclerosis. Katexco is from the Greek word to restrain or regulate, and we are trying to restrain the immune system in inflammatory disease.
Addiction, Author Interviews, Clots - Coagulation, NEJM / 27.09.2018

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_44818" align="alignleft" width="150"]Dr. Amar Kelkar MD Clinical Fellow Division of Hematology & Oncology, Department of Medicine University of Florida College of Medicine, UF Health Shands Hospital Dr. Kelkar[/caption] Dr. Amar Kelkar MD Clinical Fellow Division of Hematology & Oncology, Department of Medicine University of Florida College of Medicine, UF Health Shands Hospital MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are synthetic cannabinoids? Response: Starting in March 2018, patients began reporting to hospitals and clinics with unexplained and prolonged bleeding symptoms, first in Chicago, Illinois, and then spreading to Peoria, Illinois and elsewhere. This gained a lot of press because the initial identifying factor was that all the patients had reported recent use of synthetic cannabinoids. As the matter was studied further, it was determined that these patients were likely exposed to an anticoagulant poison mixed in with the synthetic cannabinoids. Synthetic cannabinoids are lab-derived illicit drugs that target the cannabinoid receptors that are also targeted by marijuana. They go by many names including synthetic marijuana, K2, and Spice.