New study may now be conducted to find the effectiveness of marijuana in relieving symptoms of PTSD. Multidisciplinary Approach to Psychedelic Studies (MAPS) announced the Drug Enforcement Agency’s (DEA) approval allowing scientists to conduct multiple studies. The studies conducted will be placebo-controlled with the intention of finding benefits of medical marijuana use for PTSD sufferers.
In December 2014, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment pledged to give MAPS $2 million towards research efforts, The Washington Times reports. Federal approval was required before the funding could be appropriated.
In a statement, MAPS says, “The DEA’s approval marks the first time a clinical trial intended to develop smoked botanical marijuana into a legal prescription drug has received full approval from U.S. regulatory agencies, including the DEA and the Food and Drug Administration.”
Director of clinical research for MAPS, Amy Emerson, says, “We are thrilled to see this study overcome the hurdles of approval so we can begin gathering the data. This study is a critical step in moving our botanical drug development program forward at the federal level to gather information on the dosing, risks and benefits of smoked marijuana for PTSD symptoms.”
MAPS spokesman Brad Burge told the Military Times that, “The contract with the state of Colorado was signed on April 20 – an unofficial national holiday in some circles – meaning the funds are en route to MAPS. We are now preparing to lace the order for the marijuana for the study.”
Four types of strains would be included in the study. The THC and CBD ratios would vary to compare effectiveness. The group of study participants would include 76 American military veterans who show previous resistance to traditional PTSD treatments.
Statistics show that about 20 percent of Iraqi war veterans and 31 percent of Vietnam war veterans suffer from PTSD.