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Source: @norml @WeedConnection
Posted By: norml@weedconnection.com
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- Tue, 05 Dec 2017 04:20:21 PST

Study: Marijuana Use History Not Independently Associated With Atherosclerosis

San Francisco, CA: The cumulative use of marijuana is not independently associated with an increased risk of atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries), according to longitudinal data published online ahead of print in the journal Addiction.

An international team of investigators from the United States and Switzerland assessed the relationship between the cumulative use of tobacco and/or cannabis and the risk of atherosclerosis in a cohort of 3,117 subjects between the ages of 18 and 30.

Authors reported that among participants who never smoked tobacco, "cumulative marijuana-years were not associated with AAC (abdominal artery calcium) or CAC (coronary artery calcium)." By contrast, those subjects who smoked tobacco only, or who consumed both substances for a period of at least five years, possessed an elevated risk of subclinical atherosclerosis.

Previous research published by the team reports that the cumulative lifetime use of cannabis is not associated with cardiovascular disease, stroke, or coronary heart disease.

Full text of the study, "Lifetime marijuana use and subclinical atherosclerosis: The Coronary Artery Risk Development in Young Adults (CARDIA) study," appears in Addiction.

Michigan: Legalization Coalition Turns In 360,000 Signatures To Place Issue On 2018 Ballot

Lansing, MI: Proponents of a voter initiative effort to legalize and regulate the personal use and retail sale of cannabis in Michigan have turned in more than 360,000 signatures in an effort to qualify the measure for the November 2018 ballot. Advocates must possess a total of 252,523 valid signatures from registered voters in order to place the initiative - the Michigan Regulation and Taxation of Marihuana Act - on next year's ballot.

The initiative permits those over the age of 21 to possess and grow personal use quantities of cannabis and related concentrates, while also licensing activities related to the commercial marijuana production and retail marijuana sales.

Proponents of the effort, The Coalition to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol, include members of the Marijuana Policy Project, the ACLU of Michigan, the Drug Policy Alliance, the National Patients Rights Association, Michigan NORML, MI Legalize, the Michigan Cannabis Coalition, and lawyers from the State Bar of Michigan Marijuana Law Section.

Advocates sought to place a similar measure on the Michigan ballot in 2016. That effort was ultimately turned back when lawmakers imposed and the courts upheld new rules limiting the time frame during which signatures could be collected.

Marijuana law reform advocates are presently gathering signatures for voter-initiated efforts in Missouri and Utah. Proponents of a medical marijuana initiative in South Dakota have turned in their signatures and are awaiting a review by the Secretary of State's office. A statewide initiative legalizing the use of medical marijuana in Oklahoma has already qualified for the 2018 electoral ballot.

More Information @ regulatemi.org

Canada: House Members Overwhelmingly Pass Adult Use Regulation Bill

Ottawa, Canada: Members of the House of Commons voted 200 to 82 to approve legislation that seeks to legalize and regulate the adult use cannabis market.

Liberal Party members, including Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, back the measure, which now faces debate in the Senate - where several members have threatened to delay passing the bill.

The Cannabis Act, Bill C-45, amends the federal Controlled Drugs and Substances Act so that those over the age of 18 may legally possess, purchase, and grow personal use quantities of cannabis. It further seeks to establish rules and regulations governing the commercial production of retail cannabis products. Proponents of the legislation hope to have the new law in place by July 1, 2018.

Health Canada is presently seeking public feedback regarding the regulations. Written comments will be accepted through January 20, 2018.

Updates regarding the status and text of the legislation is available from the Library of Parliament.

Florida: Lawsuit Challenges Regulators' Failure To Fully Implement Medical Marijuana Law

Tallahassee, FL: Florida patients and growers have filed a lawsuit over regulators' failure to meet deadlines associated with the state's 2016 voter-approved medical cannabis law.

Plaintiffs argue that the state Department of Health has failed to issue licenses for additional dispensaries despite an October deadline. "Florida law required the DOH to issue ten additional licenses by October 3, 2017," the suit claims. "[Y]et the Department has failed to do so - an issue which patients say limits their access to lifesaving medicine."

Regulators also have a backlog of patient applications from those seeking to participate in the state's nascent medical cannabis access program.

Seventy-one percent of Florida voters approved Amendment 2 - a voter-initiated constitutional amendment permitting the regulated distribution of cannabis to qualified patients.

In July, plaintiffs Florida for Care filed suit challenging a legislative change to the amendment that prohibits the possession of cannabis "in a form for smoking." That legal challenge remains ongoing.

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