Trey Malone receives funding from the U.S. Department if Agriculture, the Charles Koch Foundation, and the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development.
Michigan State University provides funding as a founding partner of The Conversation US.
Hemp, marijuana and cannabanoidals
In states where recreational marijuana is legal, the list of cannabis-derived products greatly expands to include CBD with much higher THC content than 0.3%.
One of the arguments against the use of the medication “is that there have not been satisfactory drug trials to prove its safety and effectiveness”, reports the BBC’s Debbie Jackson.
However, it is important to note that licences for CBD oil as a medicine have not been granted yet, and manufacturers cannot make claims about their alleged medical benefits.
Instead, it is used by people who want to manage conditions like chronic pain, PTSD and epilepsy. The substance is also being trialled to see if it can help with anxiety and arthritis.
“There isn't enough evidence to say that the oil definitely does help with these things, nor that simply cramming some in a milkshake will do the slightest bit of good, just that doctors are optimistic about their research,” says lifestyle magazine The Street.
Why and how is it used?
However, CBD is an exception and is completely legal in the UK, “provided it has been derived from an industrial hemp strain that is EU-approved”, or comes from outside the EU.
For CBD oil to be legal in the UK, it must contain no THC. Cannabis oil, which has THC content, is not usually allowed in the UK.
There is an exemption to this rule, the BBC reports. Sativex, a 50-50 mix of THC and CBD produced in a lab, has been approved for use in the UK as a treatment for multiple sclerosis.
Cannabidiol has entered the mainstream, but effects are unclear
CBD oil can be used in a number of different ways, says health information site Verywell. “You can smoke it (typically in vape pens), take it in capsule form, use it sublingually (under the tongue), use oral sprays or drops, or apply it topically to your skin,” the site explains.
The medical effects of CBD aside, “in many cases, the industry is taking consumers for a ride”, says Mike Power in The Guardian. He cites lab tests commissioned by the think tank Centre for Medicinal Cannabis (CMC) which analysed high-street offerings and found that more than half of the most popular CBD oils sold do not contain the level of CBD promised on the label.
The Farm Bill removed all hemp-derived products, including CBD, from the Controlled Substances Act, which criminalizes the possession of drugs. In essence, this means that CBD is legal if it comes from hemp, but not if it comes from cannabis (marijuana) – even though it is the exact same molecule. Currently, many people obtain CBD online without a medical marijuana license, which is legal in most states.
CBD, or cannabidiol, is the second most prevalent active ingredient in cannabis (marijuana). While CBD is an essential component of medical marijuana, it is derived directly from the hemp plant, a cousin of marijuana, or manufactured in a laboratory. One of hundreds of components in marijuana, CBD does not cause a “high” by itself. According to a report from the World Health Organization, “In humans, CBD exhibits no effects indicative of any abuse or dependence potential…. To date, there is no evidence of public health related problems associated with the use of pure CBD.”
Is cannabidiol legal?
CBD has been touted for a wide variety of health issues, but the strongest scientific evidence is for its effectiveness in treating some of the cruelest childhood epilepsy syndromes, such as Dravet syndrome and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome (LGS), which typically don’t respond to antiseizure medications. In numerous studies, CBD was able to reduce the number of seizures, and, in some cases, stop them altogether. Epidiolex, which contains CBD, is the first cannabis-derived medicine approved by the FDA for these conditions.
How is cannabidiol different from marijuana, cannabis and hemp?
Outside of the US, the prescription drug Sativex, which uses CBD as an active ingredient, is approved for muscle spasticity associated with multiple sclerosis and for cancer pain. Within the US, Epidiolex is approved for certain types of epilepsy and tuberous sclerosis.