Category Archives: Article

Ava Barry back home after securing medicinal cannabis license

Monday, December 04, 2017 – 09:09 am

Irish “medicinal cannabis refugee” Ava Barry, 8, arrived home from The Hague over the weekend with her parents and was reunited with her siblings for a family Christmas, writes Olivia Kelleher.

Ava, who is from Aghabullogue, Co Cork, travelled to Holland last summer with her family to receive medicinal cannabis for a catastrophic form of epilepsy called Dravets Syndrome.

After two years of campaigning, her parents Vera and Paul this week received the news of the granting of the medicinal cannabis licence for Ava.

read the article

What Are Terpenes? A Cannabis Enthusiast’s Guide To Understanding Terpenes

One of the most fun aspects about being a cannabis consumer or patient is smelling the array of fragrances that the plant’s flowers produce. With ranges between fruity aromas and cheese-like smells, one can sense a level of familiarity and developed expertise with cannabis as the relationship between plant and nose deepens. So what exactly is behind these fragrances that trigger such connections? And what is it that makes them so unique?

You may have heard of terpenes or terpenoids, the chemical that gives cannabis it’s different types of scents. Terpenes are organic hydrocarbons found in the essential oils of plants. With the rise of the legal cannabis industry, the discussion around terpenes has recently heated up. We’re here to break down what these chemicals are, and exactly what they are doing to make your cannabis experience so unique.

First, the words terpenes and terpenoids are often used interchangeably, although the meanings do vary. Terpenes are the naturally occurring combination of carbon and hydrogen, whereas terpenoids are terpenes that have been modified through a drying and curing process (chemical modification), altering the oxygen content of the compound.

In cannabis, terpenes are made in the trichomes of the plant. Trichomes are the shiny, sticky, mushroom-shaped crystals that cover the leaves and buds. Trichomes on cannabis act as a defense mechanism in nature, protecting the plant from insects and animals through the production of fragrant terpenes that repel danger. As humans, we smell these terpenes and can make inferences about the strain and possible physiological effects of the various cannabis plants.

Cannabis is an incredibly diverse plant in its biological makeup and potential benefits — and terpenes – are no exception. There are over 100 different identified terpenes in the cannabis plant, and while the differences can be subtle, much progress has been made in making classification of terpenes and their effects easy for patients and consumers to understand. Broadly, terpenes can be broken down into sweet, sour, spicy, or bitter — with each category further breaking down into more specific smells. These specific smells consist with certain strains, which in turn correlate to the effects of that plant. In fact, to help with this., many companies have produced terpene wheels to better help people understand this. More on that in a bit.

Here’s an example: A sour-smelling flower may have a strong lemon scent to it. Lemon scented strains are often correlated with strains like lemon skunk or lemon haze; these are zesty sativas that give the consumer a boost of energy and euphoria. With a better understanding of terpenes and how they relate to the scents that you are experiencing, you are able to come to certain conclusions about the plant in front of you by simply smelling it. This is powerful information for consumers, patients, and growers alike.

So what exactly are these terpenes? read the article


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Who Is Cannabis?

Kathleen Harrison MD

Homo sapiens, and all the Homo species that preceded us, or cohabited with us for a part of our history, are in fact far younger than are the plants that we embrace. The Cannabaceae is the old family that includes the several Cannabis species (C. sativa, C. indica, and C. ruderalis) and their cousin, also our dear friend, hops (Humulus lupulus). The origins of this plant family date back ninety million years. Our genus, Homo, is currently considered to be a mere 2.8 million years old. So the ancestors of this plant that we so love were doing there own thing for a very long time before we two-leggeds showed up to appreciate their leafy descendants. The antecedents of the Cannabis we now know were hanging out with the dinosaurs, and with many stranger life forms that are now long gone. All that accumulated experience is in the Cannabis story, written right there in the genes of every bud of our beloved herb.

When humans personify a plant species, what that means is that we sense the persona that the plant presents, the character of the plant. Personification is something that even modern humans do, although mostly unconsciously. We name hurricanes, forest fires, diseases, then we talk about them in the terms of human qualities and motivations. Read Article


As a next step, the researchers hope to conduct a clinical trial to investigate whether THC also reverses aging processes and improves cognitive ability in the human brain.

The findings by the research team from the University of Bonn and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem were recently published in the journal Nature Medicine, and may pave the way for new treatments for human dementia and other cognitive disorders

The active ingredient in marijuana – tetrahydrocannabinol or THC – was first discovered by a team of researchers from the Hebrew U.’s School of Pharmacy in 1964, with its isolation, structure elucidation and total synthesis reported by organic chemist Prof. Raphael Mechoulam in 1970.

As the brain ages, cognitive ability decreases, making it more difficult to learn new things or multitask.

Although this process is normal, in some cases, it can evolve into dementia.

Researchers have long sought ways to slow or even reverse this process.

Over a period of four weeks, the German-Israeli research team administered a small quantity of THC to mice aged two, 12 and 18 months. Mice normally show pronounce cognitive deficits as early as age one. (A interesting study to follow)

Cannabinoids in Pediatrics

Despite its controversial nature, the use of medical marijuana and cannabis-derived medicinal products grows more popular with each passing year. As of November 2016, over 40 states have passed legislation regarding the use of either medical marijuana or cannabidiol products. Many providers have started encountering patients experimenting with cannabis products for a wide range of conditions. While the debate continues regarding these agents for both medicinal and recreational use in the general population, special consideration needs to be made for pediatric use. This review will deliver the history of marijuana use and legislation in the United States in addition to the currently available medical literature to equip pediatric health care providers with resources to provide patients and their parents the best recommendation for safe and appropriate use of cannabis-containing compounds.

read whole article

Mexico Legalizes Medical Cannabis

We heard about this when Ed and I were at Hope4Cancer and i am happy to see this has come to pass.

A decree issued by Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto today confirmed that Mexico has legalized cannabis for medicinal use after overwhelming support from Mexico’s Lower House of Congress.

Sure wish our country would finally take it out of the Schedule 1 status,