NY State To Hold Clinical Trials For Marijuana

NEW YORK: New York State is partnering with a British company to hold clinical trials for marijuana-based medication for children who have seizures that are resistant to their medicine.

An agreement was signed Sunday between Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s administration and GW Pharmaceuticals. The state Health Department and the company will develop the framework for a clinical trial for a marijuana-based drug for people under the age of 18.

It will involve Epidiolex, an investigational medication that uses cannabidiol, a marijuana extract that doesn’t get users high. It could help children with rare forms of epilepsy such as Dravet and Lennox-Gastaut syndromes.

Minnesota Lawmakers Agree To Legalize Medical Marijuana Under Tight Restrictions

MINNESOTA: Minnesota lawmakers struck a deal Thursday to legalize medical marijuana, handing a major victory to severely ill children and adults whose emotional appeals for help propelled a major policy change that once appeared dead for the session.

Gov. Mark Dayton said he would sign the legislation, which was closer to the House’s more restrictive bill than the Senate’s. Some patients lamented that the agreement doesn’t allow them to use actual plant material — they instead can use the drug in oil, pill and vapor form — but others were overjoyed.

“This will change my daughter’s life and thousands of lives around Minnesota,” said Angie Weaver of Hibbing, whose 8-year-old daughter is afflicted by a rare form of epilepsy.

The compromise bill allows for two manufacturing facilities and eight dispensaries statewide, more than the House bill called for. But it covers fewer conditions than the Senate favored. Its prohibition against using plant material disappointed some advocates, who said vaporizing the leaf or smoking the drug were the only ways some patients could get relief from their maladies.

‘Charlotte’s Web’ Cannabis Oil Showing Great Results For Girl

COLORADO: One of the dozens of families who moved to Colorado in order to treat their kids with a cannabis oil that helps combat seizures says they are seeing outstanding results.

Jenna, 8, and her family moved to Colorado in January from Minnesota. She has epilepsy and had been on a waiting list for the cannabis oil known as Charlotte’s Web, which is now legal to use under Colorado’s new marijuana laws.

Charlotte’s Web, which has less than .03 THC, is named after a Colorado girl who was the first to receive the treatment. It is a custom-cultivated marijuana strain with a high amount of a compound shown to help control seizures in some children.

Marijuana Can Alleviate MS Symptoms

With medical marijuana dispensaries set to open later this year in Massachusetts, a review of the latest research suggests that it can help alleviate multiple sclerosis symptoms such as pain, overactive bladder, and muscle stiffness.

But the review, conducted by specialists convened by the American Academy of Neurology, found that marijuana does not help relieve the uncontrollable limb spasms that result from a drug used to treat Parkinson’s disease. And it concluded that there is insufficient evidence to know whether the drug reduces symptoms caused by neurological diseases such as Huntington’s disease, Tourette’s syndrome, or epilepsy.

“We wanted to inform patients and physicians, but we didn’t make specific treatment recommendations,” said study coauthor Dr. Gary Gronseth, a professor of neurology at the University of Kansas Medical Center in Kansas City.

Florida Senate Advances Bill To Provide For Dispensaries For Limited Strains Of Marijuana

FLORIDA:While the Florida House of Representatives moves to decriminalize a non-euphoric strain of marijuana, the Senate advanced an alternative approach on Monday — create up to four highly regulated dispensaries to distribute the strain for medical purposes.

It is an approach that states that have legalized medical marijuana are increasingly turning to, after gaps in those laws led to legal confusion and needless prosecution.

Florida legislative leaders say they are not prepared to legalize marijuana for a broader range of maladies than the non-euphoric strain intended to benefit children with intractable epilepsy.

Medical Marijuana Refugees: ‘This Was Our Only Hope’

NEW JERSEY :  They’ve come from as far away as Australia and Canada, or as close as Oklahoma.

They are of different backgrounds and ages, but they’ve all moved to Colorado for the same thing: medical marijuana to treat their sick children.

“Jordan had her first seizure at 6 months old. I had never seen a seizure before,” says her mother, Paula Lyles. “We took her to the hospital. The doctors said that would probably be the only one she’d have and sent us home.”

But when Jordan was 18 months old, the seizures began in earnest.

But she didn’t receive a diagnosis until she was nearly 11. It was Dravet syndrome, a severe form of epilepsy characterized by uncontrolled, continuous seizures. Jordan was put on a combination of three anti-seizure medications.

7 Things You Need To Know About Sativex

GREAT BRITAIN: Many are starting to hear about a marijuana-based pharmaceutical called Sativex. The drug, which comes as an oral spray, has already been approved in 24 countries as a treatment for multiple sclerosis.

While yet to be approved in the United States, Sativex is legally available in countries like Canada, Australia, Britain and, most recently, France. But the drug has generated a lot of talk in the U.S., largely due to its role in the medical marijuana debate.

According to a recent interview with GW Pharmaceuticals, the company behind the drug, Sativex could be just months away from FDA approval. And if that happens, there’s no doubt the debate over marijuana as a medicine will only intensify.

Ohio Needs Heroes

OHIO: Paige needs a hero.  Ohio needs a lot of heroes.  The little girl in this poignant video is but one of many thousands of Ohioans who are suffering due to a lack of safe and legal access to therapeutic cannabis.

We have many families in Ohio with kids who suffer from Dravet Syndrome and epilepsy who could surely benefit from this amazing plant.  Presently Ohio families with children like Paige, have to make tough choices: move for treatment and leave behind their families, careers and homes, or stay put and endure the barrage of seizures and permanent brain damage that come with these debilitating diseases. [Read more…]

Medical Marijuana Coming To The Carolinas Next?

NORTH CAROLINA:  The push to legalize “Charlotte’s Web”, a strain of medical marijuana in liquid form given to children suffering from pediatric epilepsy, is increasing in both North and South Carolina.

Makers of the drug say this particular strain can’t get you high.  Parents agree, and are uprooting their lives in the Carolinas to move to Colorado, where it’s legal, to get it for their children.

WBTV has been investigating this drug for weeks.

We found politicians – both Democrat and Republican – who say they’re advocates.  We couldn’t find any politician or group saying they’re flat-out against oils high in CBD.

“You can’t find the other side, because there is no other side,” says North Carolina State Representative Kelly Alexander, a Democrat from Mecklenburg County.

 

Epilepsy Foundation: Medical Marijuana Must Be A Treatment Option

WASHINGTON:  The Epilepsy Foundation has strongly endorsed medical marijuana as a treatment option for the seizures that strike 2.3 million Americans, and has called on the federal government to change how it classifies pot.

“The Epilepsy Foundation believes that the end of seizures should not be determined by one’s zip code,” CEO Philip Cattone and board chairman Warren Lammert said Thursday in a statement.

The two foundation leaders urged the feds to:

– Reschedule marijuana from its status as a Schedule I drug, the same as heroin, in recognition of properties that help patients of multiple illnesses. [Read more…]