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Florida House to Fight Again for Intervening in Medical Marijuana Amendment

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There are still concerns about Florida appropriately acting on the constitutional amendment of 2016 about marijuana legalization. House officials of Florida are once again getting active about it.

The lawyers for the House gave an issue last week that they would be appealing the circuit judge’s ruling that restricted the House to intervene in the 2017 law. It was designed to do the amendment. This came into action as the officials are also looking forward to requesting the first District Court of Appeal to permit the House for intervention in a case regarding the law of 2017.

The circuit judge had made his decision last month

The notice which the officials filed on Friday does not have details regarding the arguments made in the House. However, it is looking forward to inversing a decision that Leon County Circuit Judge Charles Dodson made in May. It did not let the House intervene in Patients and Producers Alliance Inc. lawsuits against the Florida Department of Health.

The Alliance stated that the law of 2017 does not follow the amendment of the constitution as it does not properly limit medical cannabis firms. The House opposed and put forward its demand in the circuit court that it has the right to defend the 2017 law. It can point and address Florida’s need to investigate federal laws that are keeping marijuana illegal.

The House demanded the right to defend the law

The House stated in the circuit court in January that the Representatives make half of Florida’s policy developing body. That is why the house is highly eligible to respond and defend the 2017 law efficiently. The House also pointed out that the amendment of medical marijuana offers authority for just implementation and not for policy development.

The authority for implementation is given to the Department of Health. However, the state constitution power distribution impedes in giving authority for developing policy. The legislative body is the only body having jurisdiction on the constitutional level to develop strategies regarding the implementation of the amendment. These policies will be other than the overriding federal drug policy.

However, the circuit judge delivered an order in May that rejected the House arguments. He cited a decision from November for another case that did not let the House intervene in the matter. Florigrown, a Tampa based firm, has filed a ruling that the House has appealed.

The court did not favor the House

The court held in favor of the Department of Health and stated that the House did not have a direct link and coherence to the issue. The legal operation would not have any direct influence on the House.
The 2017 law attracts a lot of controversies as it places many restrictions on the otherwise unstoppable and booming industry. For instance, it has restricted smoking medical cannabis and in return, drew a big challenge. Governor Ron DeSantis has made efforts since the House lost in the court to lift the ban from smoking medical marijuana.

The House is ready for another hearing on June 11 at the Court of Appeal

The Alliance and lawsuits from Florigrown challenge issues like limitations on firms approvable for doing business and vertical integration. The requirement pushes the firms to expand and sell marijuana for medical purposes. This is an opposition to companies that are given licenses for doing other things in the industry.
The county judge made a decision favoring Florigrown last year. He issued a temporary order that required the health officials of the state to register the firm along with others to continue the business. However, Florida has appealed the injunction, and it will be up for hearing which is due June 11 at the Court of Appeal.

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Cannabis

What Does 2020 Hold For Marijuana Stocks?

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The relaxation of marijuana-related laws across the USA has certainly increased investment prospects in marijuana stocks. With rising global interest in the market, the future of marijuana stocks holds promising results for investors.

This move has opened new opportunities for the venture portfolios of stakeholders in the market.  If things move in the right direction, one can expect exceptional returns along with improvements in economic indicators.

Is 2020 a year of recession?

The year 2020 has seen unbridled economic uncertainty and changing trends in the stock market so far. After a slight recovery from the market crash that began in February, speculations of further bearish market trends have left investors, skeptical.

For some stakeholders, classifying this year as a period of recession is an early ruling. The National Bureau of Economic Research, however, has a contradicting verdict. It categorizes 2020 as a recessive year due to the unconventional drop in unemployment and production it triggered globally.

It is not surprising to see how the stock market is striving hard to recover from the recent unexpected blows. Investment opportunities offered by marijuana stocks can certainly help economies tolerate the effects of this partial recession. Many hope this year sees a shorter dip of growth as compared to the previous episodes of contraction.

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Did marijuana stocks perform well in 2020?

Despite the pandemic, the trend in the growth of marijuana stocks has been encouraging in the past few months. This trend has made marijuana stocks a safe haven for investors who are hungry for higher returns on investments.

Part of this growth in marijuana stocks can be associated with the pandemic itself. People following SOPS are turning towards marijuana usage for recreational purposes, causing a spike in consumption.

The recent policy by 11 states permitting recreational marijuana usage is a big move that has spiked marijuana stock prices. In addition, 33 other states that permitted medicinal usage, has opened new windows for marijuana-related investments.

This decriminalization of marijuana has also become a new and attractive source of tax revenue for the government. According to Forbes, the state of Washington has generated around $319 million in cannabis tax revenue, while California and Colorado produced $ 300 million and $266 million respectively.

With the increasing burden of social benefits, these tax revenues may spike federal interest. This factor has also piqued the interest of stakeholders, as the marijuana industry has not only survived well but outperformed various sectors in this pandemic permeated year, making it a big source for job generation and tax revenues for the government.

This has been a much welcome change for ancillary companies like KushCo holdings Inc. The company has seen a massive growth of 130% since March of 2020, as compared to the previous losses of 45% in revenues. The company now stands on the hot list for investors, who are eyeing it as a profitable future investment.

Other companies like OrganiGram Holdings, Aurora Cannabis, Aphria, etc. are also making it to that list successfully. This can be associated with increased demands from countries like Poland, Germany, and Canada, which now allow recreational marijuana use.

Another less discussed factor that may probe spikes in marijuana stock prices is an increased diversion of the general public towards alternate medicine. There are speculations for the CBD market to grow to $1.3 billion by 2022 from a $390 million in 2018 according to New Frontier Data.

With big chain stores like Kroger, Wholefoods, and American Eagle showing interest in selling an extended range of CBD products, investors can expect the market for marijuana and its related derivatives to see a positive trend in growth rate, providing profitable investment prospective.

All in all, it can be deduced that the marijuana industry has a lot of potentials not only in the United States but also globally. This makes it a safe investment for stakeholders considering the market trends so far.

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Study: Cannabis Terpene Treatment For COVID-19

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Cannabis Terpene NT-VRL

A recent Israeli study has found a possible treatment for COVID-19 complications in cannabis. The chemical CBD (cannabidiol) has been studied in a combination with a cannabis terpene (NT-VRL). This CBD is one of the key ingredients in cannabis sativa. Meanwhile, the cannabis terpene NT-VRL (patent of Ebyna) is an aromatic chemical from the flowers of the plant. When administered in combination, there has been a noticeable positive effect on ‘cytokine storm’, a feared complication of COVID-19.

Cytokine storm is a dangerous reaction to COVID-19 by the body’s immune system

The term ‘cytokine storm’ refers to a chain reaction of immune cells, causing increasing levels of inflammation. Because the body is responding the the coronavirus infecting the patient, it secretes small proteins called ‘cytokines’. Usually, these have small but important roles in helping kill off the virus by creating inflammation and fever. However, when this reaction goes unchecked, it can be deadly if untreated. The patient would undergo very high levels of fever, fatigue, inflammation and in worst-cases, respiratory failure.

This is why the recent discovery that COVID-19 can lead to cytokine storm was so shocking. It meant that even young, healthy people with strong immune systems would be susceptible to potential deaths from this disease. Furthermore, the most widely-used drug of choice for treating this, dexamethasone, is undergoing global shortage.

The company, Ebyna, had patented the cannabis terpene, NT-VRL

The study was a collaboration between Ebyna, the terpene company, and Cannasoul, a cannabis research entity. Thus, Ebyna and Cannasoul’s joint venture led to the formation of an inhalant drug. This contained NT-VRL, to be administered with or without CBD. The aim of the study was to investigate the effects they had on treating cytokine storm from COVID-19.

Long just dismissed as simply useful in the flavor/smell of cannabis products, terpenes were shown to be very effective in this case. When combined with the CBD, which has also been shown to have positive health effects, it was remarkable. The combined therapy of both CBD and NT-VRL significantly improved symptoms of cytokine storm from COVID-19.

“This type of delivery [inhaled, rather than ingested] method is a game-changer enabling us to achieve therapeutic qualities from these unique phytochemicals like never before,” said Nadav Eya, the CEO of Ebyna. He was referring to the unexpected efficacy of the NT-VRL therapy in this COVID-19 complication.

Other studies confirm Ebyna-Cannasoul’s findings

Outside of Israel, several studies report similar findings. More and more researchers are turning to cannabis byproducts to battle the COVID-19 pandemic.

Igor and Olga Kovalchuck, researchers from Canada, were both developing a new strain of cannabis. Their aim was to extract anti-cancer drugs from it. However, the new COVID-19 pandemic caused them to shift focus towards combating the coronavirus. Their strain is hoped to be able to produce a drug that could reduce the communicability of SARS-CoV2. It would do so by restricting the ACE-2 receptors in the body.

All in all, Ebyna and Cannasoul’s NT-VRL terpene may just be revolutionary. The existence of terpene as an anti-cytokine storm drug is still debatable, and more research is still required. However, their study and that of corroborators have shown that cannabis is even more useful a plant than we had ever suspected. For more news and updates on the state of the CBD-terpene therapy, stay tuned. In the meanwhile, check out other recent studies on CBD here.

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Endocanna Health Aims To Increase Genetic Risk Awareness For COVID-19

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COVID-19

This pandemic is practically unprecedented in terms of how mysterious its risk factors are. While the mode of transmission is known, the exact factors that make a person susceptible to severe complications aren’t. Experts all agree that COVID-19 may either pass the infected with no symptoms, cause mild respiratory effects or in worst-cases deaths.

However, what still remains unclear is who is vulnerable and why. That’s why Endocanna Health, a cannabinoid DNA-research company based in California, has stepped up. They are offering a free DNA test for genetic factors in their consumers. This test is meant to scan for known genetic markers that could lead to susceptibility. While the gesture is generous, it must be cautioned such a test is not meant to be a reliable tool to assess this.

DNA research works by looking for known markers

The aim of Endocanna Health’s test is to examine possible vulnerable genes. Such genes could make a person’s immune system weaker to infection, or allow them to develop worse symptoms.

However, if you’re wondering why you haven’t been prescribed this test before, there’s a reason. Most healthcare providers and experts don’t rely on such tests because they only indicate correlation. There is no way to prove the causation. What that means, simply, is that certain genes can make COVID-19 more severe, not always. Factors like age, diet, health conditions and mental health are important too, though.

Endocanna Health’s research is most notable for its work on the human endocannabinoid system. This system includes the way certain cannabinoid neurotransmitters work to regulate mood, sensation, memory, metabolism and immunity.

The system was discovered by scientists investigating the effects of THC in marijuana on the body. While we did just mention immunity back there, it must be kept in mind that this is only part of it (more on that later).

The company’s Chief Science Officer, Dr Chris Spooner, recently claimed that the work they were doing would be useful for understanding the immune system. He mentioned the presence of cannabinoid receptors in the immune cells, that affected the strength of immune response to COVID-19. While the role of cannabinoids on the cells is clear, the message behind the aims should be scrutinized.

Your genes are not the most important factor in beating COVID-19

If Endocanna Health’s aim is to combat COVID-19, then that’s commendable. But if they think that it will significantly contribute to flattening the curve, their hopes are a tad misplaced. Major health experts, from Dr Anthony Fauci to the WHO, all assert that the number one rule to follow is to stay healthy and socially distance. If you’re worried about COVID-19, or another similar disease, then eat healthy, sleep well and stay home. DNA tests can be helpful, truly, in the case of congenital disease (think cystic fibrosis or hemophilia). But to cause misinformation about them is deliberately harmful. Let’s look at the real unsung heroes in the body’s immune system.

To fight infection, circulating white blood cells (called leucocytes) detect and attack germs. They also signal the release of chemicals like prostaglandins to create inflammation and fever, which can be beneficial.

Other cells, like mast cells, help signal the response to rest of the system. Then, from the antigens of the germs, ‘B-Cells’ create antibodies. Antibodies are basically drugs to kill off any other germs left, from bacteria to coronaviruses. This whole process is wonderfully self-regulated. And knowing your genes will just make you more paranoid than actually help, it seems.

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