Future of medical marijuana in Louisiana is in limbo

Louisiana's medical marijuana program is just getting off the ground, with plans to have products available by this summer. However, the future of that now hangs in limbo.

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced he's rescinding an Obama Administration policy that helped pave the way for legal marijuana in a growing number of states. The decision leaves programs, like the L.S.U. Ag Center's Therapeutic Cannabis Program, with more questions than answers.


Researchers investigate cannabis compounds to treat Dementia

A few times a day, 92-year-old Lucy Hanson takes a little capsule; in it is medical marijuana.

“They call it my happy pill and I call it my happy pill,” Hanson laughs.

It’s hard to believe when you talk to her now but, four years ago, Lucy was confused, falling down and speaking gibberish. She often lay in bed and would make no eye contact with her family or friends.

Her daughter brought her to a neurology clinic where specialists ran diagnostic tests and looked over all of her medications. They said the problems were not with her prescription drugs.

“They came back with a diagnosis of advanced dementia,” said her youngest daughter Tania Hanson DeYoung, adding “We thought we’d only have her for another six months.”


Louisiana's first medical marijuana grower contract is done

Louisiana State University has completed its contract with the company that will grow medical marijuana for the school and said Monday the drug is expected to reach patients by the middle of next year.

Las Vegas-based GB Sciences is the first of only two producers of medical marijuana planned in Louisiana, through a deal with the LSU AgCenter. The company will start renovating its planned production facility immediately, according to a statement from the AgCenter.


Questions raised about company LSU will contract to grow marijuana for medical uses

The loser in the bid to grow medical marijuana for LSU claims the winning company’s financial disclosures are full of “red flags” that could invite federal investigation and tarnish the university’s reputation, according to a three-page letter released Tuesday.


Medical marijuana contract will give LSU at least $3.4M

The first medical marijuana production deal struck in Louisiana is expected to bring the state’s flagship university at least $3.4 million over five years.

In its bid offer, the contractor agreed to pay that amount or 10 percent of gross receipts, whichever is higher, to the LSU Ag Center for permission to grow medical marijuana.

The LSU Board of Supervisors gave its blessing to the arrangement Thursday, authorizing System President F. King Alexander to work out details of a final contract with GB Sciences Inc.

The AgCenter selected the Las Vegas-based company to manage the growing operations from seven potential vendors who applied.


Contractor chosen for Louisiana medical marijuana production

Medical marijuana in Louisiana is moving closer to production, with a contractor for the growing operation chosen by Louisiana State University.

The LSU AgCenter has selected a New Orleans affiliate of a Las Vegas company to do the work. GB Sciences was chosen from seven potential vendors.

A contract awaits consideration by the university governing board on Thursday.

Louisiana lawmakers agreed to a framework for dispensing medical marijuana in 2015.

The law will eventually get medicinal-grade marijuana to people with cancer, a severe form of cerebral palsy, seizure disorders, epilepsy, muscular dystrophy and other diseases. Eligible patients are expected to have access to the drug next year.


Plans to grow medical marijuana discussed in Louisiana House committee

The lucrative nature of marijuana sales was at the center of a House Committee on Agriculture, Forestry, Aquaculture, and Rural Development discussion today about a law that puts the state into the marijuana distribution business.

Louisiana State University and Southern University are the two schools that plan to grow marijuana at separate facilities for use as medical treatments authorized under legislation approved last spring that legalizes and regulates such distribution. LSU’s operation alone is estimated to cost between $10 million and $15 million, and lawmakers were warned it will take seven to eight years for the operation to become lucrative.


Cannabis Users More Prone to Rare Broken Heart Syndrome—Study

Smoking cannabis has been known to treat certain forms of cancer, but a recent study has found a link between use of the controversial herb and a heart-weakening condition.

Stress cardiomyopathy, popularly known as broken heart syndrome, shows symptoms eerily similar to a heart attack, including chest pain, shortness of breath, dizziness and fainting.

The effects of the rare illness, which is often caused by the heart’s inability to pump blood, are usually short-lived but could indicate a more serious condition, according to a report by The Telegraph.


Plans to grow and produce Louisiana medical marijuana

The LSU AgCenter is continuing with plans to grow medical marijuana and hope to have seeds in the ground early next year. AgCenter President Dr. Bill Richardson says they should have a business plan in place this month and they are working closely with law enforcement to ensure they are comfortable with every aspect.

“We’re meeting, have a series of meetings with the Dept. of Agriculture and Forestry, who is writing the rules for the project, the Board of Pharmacy, the Board of Medical Examiners, making sure we do this exactly right.”

Richardson says they hope to get started in 2017 at an off campus location in East Baton Rouge Parish. He says legislation passed this year helped them move forward with the process and gave them exclusive rights to produce the drug.


Two Louisiana Universities Decided to Move Forward with Medical Marijuana

The Department of Agriculture and Forestry gave the necessary opportunity for Louisiana State University and Southern University first right of withholding and both institutions have expressed their interest in moving forward.

After their Friday meeting, Dr. Adell Brown, Southern's Interim Chancellor, stated that the institution has come up to a decision to submit a letter stating they will accept becoming the cultivator of Louisiana state, The Times reported.


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