First Large Public Health Study of Medical Marijuana Use in Young Adults to Begin with NIH Grant to Drexel

PENNSYLVANIA: Drexel University has received a grant for a five-year study of medical marijuana and its impact on drug use and physical and psychological health among young adults in Los Angeles. It is the first large-scale NIH project funded to directly investigate medical marijuana use among young adults aged 18 to 26.

The study, “Medical Marijuana, Emerging Adults & Community: Connecting Health and Policy,” is being led by Dr. Stephen Lankenau, an associate professor in Drexel’s School of Public Health, who was awarded an R01 grant from the National Institutes of Health for $3.3 million over five years, beginning July 1. Ultimately, Lankenau hopes the study’s findings can guide medical marijuana policies at local, state and national levels to result in the most positive health outcomes for young adults and communities.

Lankenau aims to determine the impact of medical marijuana policies in Los Angeles on young adults’ physical and psychological health. A core focus is understanding the significance and influence of dispensaries – storefronts that sell medical marijuana – on health.

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