AUG 06, 2016 11:56 AM PDT

First Medical Marijuana Conference at Harvard Medical School

WRITTEN BY: Julianne Chiaet

Harvard Medical School recently hosted the first annual cannabis conference, where they awarded Rafael Mechoulam a lifetime achievement award. Mechoulam is an Israeli chemist known as the father of medical marijuana research. He identified the structure of cannabidiol in 1963 and isolated the active compound in marijuana, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), in 1964.

"I thought that as soon as we knew the chemistry, the pharmacology, and the toxicity - and if there are any positive effects - companies will go in and take compounds and go ahead with clinical trials, which is true for a huge huge number of drugs," Mechoulam said to PBS.

The drug was made illegal one year after the 1936 release of "Reefer Madness." In the United States, it remains a schedule one controlled substance, in the same category as heroin. This classification has led to tight restrictions for researchers who want to research the drug.

Parents of epileptic children have strongly championed marijuana research within the last couple years due to the significant improvement medical marijuana has had on alleviating their children's seizures. Researchers believe the pace of research will dramatically quicken when marijuana becomes legal.
About the Author
  • Julianne (@JuliChiaet) covers health and medicine for LabRoots. Her work has been published in The Daily Beast, Scientific American, and MailOnline. While primarily a science journalist, she has also covered culture and Japanese organized crime. She is the New York Board Representative for the Asian American Journalists Association (AAJA). • To read more of her writing, or to send her a message, go to Jchiaet.com
You May Also Like
NOV 06, 2020
Chemistry & Physics
The Most Powerful X-ray Source On Earth
NOV 06, 2020
The Most Powerful X-ray Source On Earth
Located inside the Sandia National Laboratories in Albuquerque, New Mexico, the Z Pulsed Power Facility (or Z Machine) i ...
NOV 24, 2020
Chemistry & Physics
Want to Keep Calm? Tap Water Might Help
NOV 24, 2020
Want to Keep Calm? Tap Water Might Help
The ongoing worldwide pandemic places the mental health of many communities on red alert. But there may be a remedy to e ...
DEC 10, 2020
Plants & Animals
The Surprising Way Honeybees Protect Hives from Hornets
DEC 10, 2020
The Surprising Way Honeybees Protect Hives from Hornets
"Murder hornets," more commonly known as giant hornets, might be new to North America, but in their native ran ...
MAR 26, 2021
Plants & Animals
A Massive 17-Year Cicada Swarm will Emerge Soon
MAR 26, 2021
A Massive 17-Year Cicada Swarm will Emerge Soon
The east coast is preparing for one of nature’s greatest spectacles. A gigantic swarm of periodical cicadas is due ...
APR 01, 2021
Space & Astronomy
Astronomers Detect X-rays from Uranus for First Time
APR 01, 2021
Astronomers Detect X-rays from Uranus for First Time
Until now, astronomers had detected X-rays from every planet in our solar system apart from the two Ice Giants: Uranus a ...
MAY 15, 2021
Space & Astronomy
Scientists Find Liquid Water Inside Meteorite
MAY 15, 2021
Scientists Find Liquid Water Inside Meteorite
Scientists know that water is abundant in the solar system- existing in the rings of Saturn and on its moon, Enceladus. ...
Loading Comments...