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Wed Apr 16, 2014, 04:42 PM

Striking a Nerve: Bungling the Cannabis Story

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Source: Medpage

Correlation does not equal causation, and a single exam cannot show a trend over time. Basic stuff, right?

But judging by coverage of a study just out in the Journal of Neuroscience, these are apparently foreign concepts for many folks in the media.

In the study, researchers at Boston's Massachusetts General Hospital and Northwestern University in Chicago performed MRI brain scans on 20 young adult "casual" marijuana users and 20 age- and sex-matched nonusers. They found that, in the users, gray matter densities in the nucleus accumbens were higher than in controls, and the right amygdala and left nucleus accumbens were shaped differently.

Interesting, but remember that these findings only reflected differences between the marijuana users and controls at a single point in time. The researchers did not, could not, demonstrate that the differences resulted from marijuana smoking or even that the "abnormalities" relative to controls reflected changes from some earlier state.

Read more: http://www.medpagetoday.com/Neurology/GeneralNeurology/45290?isalert=1&uun=g313860d1133R5308195u&utm_source=breaking-news&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=breaking-news&xid=NL_breakingnews_2014-04-16

Debunked again ...

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Reply Striking a Nerve: Bungling the Cannabis Story (Original post)
MindMover Apr 2014 OP
RainDog Apr 2014 #1
Eleanors38 May 2014 #2

Response to MindMover (Original post)

Wed Apr 16, 2014, 06:02 PM

1. and here's my original comment

I just mentioned some issues with the study here: http://www.democraticunderground.com/1014781025#post78

While those who have not looked into the history of propaganda regarding cannabis ANY time the drug warriors are fighting to keep their budgets to arrest people for possession, those of us who have spent some time reading about this are rightfully skeptical about any study, not just the outcomes, but the basis for funding any studies in and of themselves, since studies that intend to show harm are the ones that get funded, while others do not.

One scientist said the current US policy is like having creationists in control of the science research budget for paleontologists:

Physicist: If All Science Were Run Like Marijuana Research, Creationists Would Control Paleontology

In the face of obstacles to marijuana research from both the Drug Enforcement Administration and the National Institute on Drug Abuse, a theoretical physicist at the California Institute of Technology and one-time MacArthur Fellow is calling out the federal government on its obstruction of science.

During an address before a medical marijuana conference Friday, John H. Schwartz explained how the DEA and NIDA act as a “tag team” to censor science, with NIDA holding a monopoly over legal access to cannabis for research, and the DEA refusing to reconsider the drug’s designation in the Controlled Substances Act as a dangerous substance with no medical value on the basis that sufficient research does not exist. He alleges that the government has blocked research even though it has long been aware of marijuana’s potential to serve many medical benefits including shrink aggressive cancer cells is because it might “send the wrong message to children”

As a physicist, I can assure you that this not how physics works. … We are all expected to act like grownups and accept it gracefully as experiments prove our favorite theories are false. In physics, unlike marijuana policy, we consider the right message to send to be the message that’s true. …

Consider what American science might look like if all research were run like marijuana research is being run now. Suppose the Institute for Creation Science were put in charge of approving paleontology digs and the science of human evolution. Imagine what would happen to the environment if we gave coal and oil companies the power to block any climate research they didn’t like.

complete piece: http://thinkprogress.org/justice/2013/02/25/1629721/caltech-physicist-if-all-science-were-run-like-marijuana-research-creationists-would-control-paleontology/

and recently, scientists have complained about the govt's refusal to fund research

Marijuana researchers: Access to research reefer limited by politics


Researchers looking to study the potential health benefits of medical marijuana use are accusing the government of steering its own supply of the drugs toward probes favoring keeping the drug illegal on the federal level, McClatchy Newspapers reported on Wednesday.

“Nobody could explain it — it’s indefensible,” University of Arizona assistant professor Suzanne Sisley told McClatchy. “The only thing we can assume is that it is politics trumping science.”

Sisley said officials at the Health and Human Services Department (HHS) waited three years before approving a university study into whether veterans suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder benefitted more from smoked or vaporized marijuana, despite the Food and Drug Administration signing off on the project.

...The government’s “stash” is located in a 12-acre garden on the campus of the University of Mississippi. University researchers grow about 13 pounds of the drug per year, with much of it distributed for use in projects approved by both HHS and the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA). The institute reported providing more than $30 million in federal funding for 69 studies related to the drug in 2012.

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Response to RainDog (Reply #1)

Thu May 8, 2014, 11:15 PM

2. Yep, been going on for years. This approach gives science in general


a bad name. We have the best university system in the world, and they have to kowtow to a police agency: The DEA.

At least some of MSM has broken ranks, likely because their readership/viewership has plummeted, and they are casting about for ANY constituency, and that might include those who support legalization.

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