Scientists, Frustrated By Funding Shortfalls, Launch Institute For Research On Cannabinoids

For years, Lisa Tollner, co-founder of the California marijuana edibles company Sensi Products, says she’s received calls and emails from customers reporting her cannabis-infused Sensi Chew caramels had helped alleviate pain, insomnia, nausea and other ailments. But Tollner wanted more.

“These people are telling me their stories, but with no real consistency,” said Tollner, who was interested in hard data on how her products worked, not shifting anecdotal evidence. “I need ways to prove our products’ efficacy.”

While 25 states plus Washington, D.C., have legalized medical marijuana, fueling an exploding marijuana market that took in just under $1 billion in sales last year, the science underpinning cannabis products has so far outpaced the industry that’s grown up around them.

That’s why Tollner has agreed to take part in one of the first scientific endeavors of the Institute For Research On Cannabinoids (IROC), a nonprofit scientific organization that’s the first of its...

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