Medical Marijuana

Surprise: Government-Grown Pot Is Total Schwag, Not Suitable for Research

Doctors using DEA-approved marijuana find it is useless for research purposes.


"It didn't resemble cannabis. It didn't smell like cannabis."

So says Sue Sisley, who is pissed, and with good reason. She didn't get ripped off by an illegal dealer or a legal dispensary. No, she got screwed by the federal government, which seems incapable of growing good-quality marijuana. Sisley is an Arizona-based primary-care doctor who was awarded a grant to study the use of pot to treat post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in military veterans. It took Sisley and her colleagues two years to get the shipment from the "12-acre farm at the University of Mississippi, run by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)…[which] since 1968…has been the only facility licensed by the DEA [Drug Enforcement Administration] to produce the plant for clinical research."

Working with Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS), Sisley and her colleagues tested the pot and found that it was contaminated with mold and not at the right potency for their research. Your tax dollars at work, growing schwag that doesn't even rise to the level of reggie.

From a PBS account of the story:

Rick Doblin, MAPS' director, says this recent episode "shows that NIDA is completely inadequate as a source of marijuana for drug development research."

"They're in no way capable of assuming the rights and responsibilities for handling a drug that we're hoping to be approved by the FDA as prescription medicine," he says.

Read more here.

Via Twitter feed of Mike Hewlett.

Watch "Transplant Denied: How Medical Marijuana Policy Kills Patients," a powerful Reason TV video from 2012. Not for the faint of heart.

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    1. Lol, old man Nick.

      Shoulda called it “bunk-ass ditch weed”.

  1. Maybe these people could get the Coast Guard to show them what good pot looks like.

  2. Sounds like good idea to pass moldy ditchweed (probably with pesticides) if one wants to discredit anything/everything about weed in general. Imagine Mormons getting monopoly to grow and distribute all “legal” coffee.

  3. Maybe government-sponsored insurers will give this sh*t out to first time patients/members just to rub a little extra salt in their wounds…I don’t want to give them any ideas, though.

  4. I thought government weed was the good shit. There was this old documentary where a guy was one of the very few people (at the time) with federal clearance to use marijuana and had a prescription for it that was filled with big fat joints. He made the point that it was really great weed.

    1. except, if it takes a big fat joint…..

  5. The 2012 video completely missed the important story. They could just as easily have made a video about the recipient of the liver that this pt. couldn’t get.

    The important story is rationing of the goddamn organs! & not letting them be bought & sold!! What’s the difference the reason this guy was bumped from the line? If he’d gotten the transplant, there’d be some reason someone else didn’t, & that would be a “story” too.

  6. Move your research to a state that wants your business.

  7. “…Sisley and her colleagues tested the pot …”

    I bet they did.

  8. All the good stuff goes home with the guys who work at the 12 acre farm.

  9. Irony, ad at the bottom of the article is for ” Dont blame me, I voted for Gary Johnson” t-shirt.

  10. “designed to fail” comes to mind

  11. This goes with the old (as far as I know, true) story about the Nevada brothel the feds took over, which lost money. Also the porn store I knew just outside of DC, which the feds also took over … and lost money.

    Proof that the Federal government couldn’t manage to arrange a piss-up in a brewery.

  12. Must be due to market failure. We need more regulation to solve this problem!

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