The UW Today, a publication of the Office of News and Information at the University of Washington reported on October 18th, 2013 that staff research scientist Beatriz Carlini, Ph.D. with the university's drug research institute had been awarded an 18-month, $110,2999 grant to educate doctors and the general public about the use of medical cannabis in the treatment of chronic pain.
Noting that chronic pain is a major public health issue, Carlini told UW Today "This project will offer non-judgmental, science-based information to clinicians and to the general public on the role of medical marijuana as an option in alleviating intractable pain in our state.”
Poetically, the grant money comes from pharmaceutical company Pfizer who falsely advertised drug information in Washington and had to pay a fine. As far as your correspondent is aware, this $110,299 grant is the largest investment in medical cannabis education for health professionals by any government agency ever in the U.S. This is a major unmet need in medical education as identified by a key review article in Mayo Clinic Proceedings last year which lamented the persistence of "ill-informed practitioners" of medicine who remain under-informed about the basic and clinical science of medicinal cannabis use due to "federal intransigence" to recognize the plant's utility.
Your correspondent, along with a colleague from the Center for the Study of Cannabis and Social Policy, are honored to be serving as a pro bono Consultants-At-Large on the UW grant. Interestingly, Carlini, who is trained as a social psychologist, isn't the only cannabis pioneer in her family. She is the daughter of pioneering Brazilian pharmacologist Elisaldo A. Carlini whose lab conducted the first modern placebo-controlled clinical trial of cannabidiol (CBD) for the treatment of epilepsy, which showed a positive-outcome. The results were published in 1980, and it only took 33 years for this science to make it to CNN Chief Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta's reportage!