The research centers will help further identify the benefits of marijuana use
One of the common arguments both for and against marijuana use is that there has not been enough research done to adequately determine the effects of cannabis. While research centers have popped up, they are still scarce and slow to launch operations. This is about to change, however, as the marijuana research industry is set to change with the addition of eight new medical marijuana research programs.
All eight programs are located in Pennsylvania, with five in Philadelphia. They will all be conducted by medical schools that have now been certified as Academic Clinical Research Centers (ACRC). The push comes after Governor Wolf authorized the schools to participate in research programs and to analyze observational data collected at various dispensaries.
The schools themselves are not allowed to conduct lab research. This is due to the federal prohibition on marijuana which, if broken, could cause them to lose federal funding. However, the schools will compile and analyze information from labs in order to speed up analysis and dissemination of data.
The schools that are now part of the ACRC program include Drexel University College of Medicine, the Lewis Katz School of Medicine at Temple University, the Sidney Kimmel Medical College at Thomas Jefferson University, Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, Penn State College of Medicine in Hershey, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine.
The state is currently accepting applications from marijuana companies that want to participate with the ACRCs. Some, such as New York-based Acreage Holdings, have already indicated that they have formed alliances. Acreage is reportedly going to work with Drexel.