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Long-awaited marijuana study in limbo after questionable termination

Photo by Mr. BlueChz

An important, long-awaited marijuana study approved by the federal government has been imperiled by the questionable termination of the key researcher.

The University of Arizona terminated Dr. Suzanne Sisley, who received federal funding to study the impact of medical marijuana on veterans with PTSD. The termination, which she called “political retaliation,” puts the research in limbo until another university hires her and approves her work, which is anything but a certainty.

The research, which underwent four years of bureaucratic delays and hearings for funding, was important because it involved giving marijuana grown by the federal government to human subjects – in this case, veterans with PTSD – to demonstrate whether it has medical value.

Dr. Sisley said the university’s vice president questioned her about her “political activity” for supporting state legislation that would have funded pot research with fees collected from the medical cannabis industry.

“We were on the cusp of finally implementing this study and helping veterans answer the question of what role marijuana can play in treating PTSD,” Sisley told the USA Today.

The university declined to comment on the termination but noted Sisley was among a number of researchers whose contracts weren’t renewed.

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