Keynote lecture: Deciphering the medical complexity of cannabis
Cannabis (marijuana) is one of humanity’s oldest cultivated plants. Cannabis has been used as a therapeutic agent for the management of pain, neurological conditions such as epilepsy and multiple sclerosis, inflammation, cancer-associated pain, anxiety, sleep, anorexia and convulsions. Cannabis contains cannabinoids- chemicals that are unique to the cannabis plant. Cannabinoids are likely responsible for the anecdotal medicinal benefits of cannabis because they affect in part how the immune system functions. Despite general excitement for cannabis-based therapy, rigorous scientific evidence is lacking for cannabis as a medicinal product. Moreover, most people still use cannabis by inhalation of cannabis smoke; other ways to inhale cannabis is by vaporizing (heating) the cannabis plant or aerosolizing cannabinoid-containing liquids. However, the safety and efficacy of these products is lacking. Using preclinical models, my cannabis-based research program is to provide answers as to whether there are long term health consequences of inhaling cannabis on a regular basis and whether/how cannabis-based products impact immune function to provide therapeutic benefit.
This seminar will be given online via Zoom. Details in attached poster.
Photo credit: Owen Egan