It’s about time…

The White House:

Today, President Biden pardoned all prior federal and D.C. offenses of simple marijuana possession.

@POTUS also called on governors to pardon simple state marijuana possession offenses.

Additionally, @POTUS asked @SecBecerra and the Attorney General to initiate the process of reviewing how marijuana is scheduled under federal law. Marijuana is currently classified at the same level as heroin – and above fentanyl.

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18 Responses to It’s about time…

  1. just saw this and came by to drop a link but ol’ Pete was ON IT!

    I’m actually shocked that this comes from Joe Biden.

    I’m not shocked that it has come to be because it is long overdue. The folks on this couch (and the man that gave us the couch to sit on!) sure helped get us here – props to all!

  2. Servetus says:

    A new light conversion technique developed in Japan can speed the growth of cannabis and other plants.

    26 OCT 2022 — An interdisciplinary team from Hokkaido University’s Engineering and Agriculture departments and the Institute for Chemical Reaction Design and Discovery (WPI-ICReDD) has developed a europium-based thin-film coating that they demonstrated accelerates both vegetal plant and tree growth. This technology can improve plant production speed and has the potential to help address global food supply issues.

    Plants convert visible light to energy via a process called photosynthesis. In addition to visible light, sunlight also contains ultraviolet (UV) light. Researchers in this study aimed to provide plants with additional visible light to use in photosynthesis by employing a wavelength converting material (WCM) that can convert the UV light into red light.

    Researchers developed a WCM based on a europium complex and made a thin-film coating that can be applied to commercially available plastic sheets. Researchers not only showed that the film converts UV light to red light, but also that the film does not block any of the beneficial visible light from the sun…Swiss chard plants grown using the WCM films showed 1.2 times greater plant height and 1.4 times greater biomass after 63 days. Researchers attributed this accelerated growth to the increased supply of red light provided by the WCM films.

    Trials involving Japanese larch trees also showed accelerated growth. Seedlings showed a higher relative growth rate in the initial 4 months of growth, resulting in a stem diameter 1.2-fold larger and total biomass 1.4-fold larger than trees grown without the WCM coating. […]

    This technology also has the potential to help with food security issues in colder climates and is beneficial because it does not require any electricity to operate. Researchers see the customizability of the technology as especially promising. […]

    Hokkaido University: UV-to-red light converting films accelerate plant growth. Plastic sheets coated with an Eu3+ film that converts UV light to red light were able to accelerate growth of vegetal plants and trees.

    Scientific Reports: Plant growth acceleration using a transparent Eu3+-painted UV-to-red conversion film

    Sunao Shoji, Hideyuki Saito, Yutaka Jitsuyama, Kotono Tomita, Qiang Haoyang, Yukiho Sakurai, Yuhei Okazaki, Kota Aikawa, Yuki Konishi, Kensei Sasaki, Koji Fushimi, Yuichi Kitagawa, Takashi Suzuki & Yasuchika Hasegawa.

  3. Servetus says:

    Largest trial data compilation to date confirms psilocybin to be an effective and symptom free treatment of major depression:

    2-NOV-2022 – A multicentre clinical trial led by COMPASS Pathways across 22 international sites including Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience (IoPPN) at King’s College London and South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust has found that a single 25mg dose of COMP360 psilocybin, alongside psychological support, had a significant impact in reducing symptoms of depression in participants with treatment-resistant depression.

    Approximately 100 million people in the world suffer with treatment-resistant depression, which means they have not responded to at least two antidepressant treatments for their major depressive disorder. […]

    [A] single 25mg dose of COMP360 psilocybin, alongside psychological support, had a significant impact in reducing symptoms of depression in participants with treatment-resistant depression.

    Approximately 100 million people in the world suffer with treatment-resistant depression, which means they have not responded to at least two antidepressant treatments for their major depressive disorder. […]

    ‘Whilst many patients with mental health problems get better with available treatments, a subgroup of patients do not, even though they try many different forms of treatment. This is sometimes called ‘treatment resistance’. This can lead to a variety of other problems that seriously impact on patients and the people around them. Treatment options are often limited, coming with troublesome side effects and/or stigma. Therefore, new paradigms of treatment are needed, and clinical research of new treatments is important. […]

    AAAS Public Science News Release:
    Largest trial to date shows that COMP360 psilocybin reduces depression symptoms

    New England Journal of Medicine: Single-Dose Psilocybin for a Treatment-Resistant Episode of Major Depression

    • Son of Sam Walton says:

      Agreed. If you feel pissed off and drive like a bucking bull with its ass on fire—if you are depressed . . . if you are fidgety because of the War, Mushrooms. I see all this late 1930s WWII(I)-drenched chaos mixed with 1970s-style rising inflation (war debt/shortages) making people go insane, and Mushrooms are a good way to reduce road rage and the anger at the other voting for the wrong folk. Remember, the Fed has assets so large it makes our debt look small, like a fixed rate mortgage . . . BUT what are on the Bank’s balance sheets after everybody wanted a FREE Lunch. Uncertainty needs mushrooms. And I don’t think the church needs to worry about ‘Believers’ turning into ‘doubters’ . . . if anything, its been like a steroid shot for spiritual beliefs for me.

      On Halloween, I did a 2.5 gram dose of mushrooms during the daytime via lemon tecking. Empty stomach and mushrooms pulverized in an espresso bean grinder. This time I had no tea bags and just dumped the powder into the electric grinder’s lid and then I drowned the dust and bits with lemon juice for about 15-20 minutes . . . boiled the water in a coffee maker with two packets of ginger tea, extra ginger (nausea), cinnamon, honey and just a bit of creamer–let the water cool a bit–strained the mushroom juice into the cup of tea–drank and in 45minutes begin the peak and for 3-4 hours, got a really good trip and a come down that just hits you with visuals soon going away . . . just in time for pizza and watching the kids walk down the street dressed up as modern day characters–many I’ll never know or understand.

      The outdoors is my go-to on shrooms and Fall colors are the best on them. Most of the time I listen to music, but the woods were thick with deer, squirrels, and the sounds of bagpipes–highly influenced by early 1950s country music, Oktoberfest polkas, and lots of late 70s-early 80s Grateful Dead.

      PTSD would be better treated with twice-a-month doses of mushrooms of strengths determined by the user. Most of the time I want an 8th of shrooms –sometimes I’ll take 8grams and other times I just want 2 or a bit more. Lemon juice just makes it easier to do without having to spend longer than 4 hours and that fourth hour is a part of the come-down–it don’t last long and I can’t think of anybody who goes back to the old ways of taking shrooms after they’ve done lemon tecking . . . makes it more like acid instead of just slowly coming up–being there and then slowly coming down . . . who’s got 6hrs to waste? What other medicine helps you travel back in time to witness the rocky barren earth turn into life and ride in a WWII bomber with a group of boys who never made it back to base in England, 1945?

      • Servetus says:

        I’ve had really good results with psilocybin. It’s about time. I’ve had major depression since age 11, and only within the last few years has anything been made easily available that proves really effective for treatment resistant varieties of the syndrome. Here in the Bay Area I can at least buy shrooms right off the shelf. What I can’t find on the shelf right now in this era of pandemics is shoe polish. Oh well.

        The research study I posted above indicates that a stair-way-to-heaven dose of at least 25 milligrams is sufficient for having a lasting effect. Makes sense I suppose. Enjoyment is therapy.

        • NorCalNative says:

          …”I’ve had really good results with psilocybin.”…

          That’s good to know and hear. What’s your dosing and dosing frequency?

          This drug-war thang could take a bad turn if we end up with a bunch of right-wing nut jobs in the mid-terms. I suspect for 2024 Trump is done. But If he returns he’s talked about executing drug dealers. In that environment, culturally advanced pockets where psilocybin is legal could see drastic and dramatic changes to policy. That would really suck.

          Any idea how 25 mg of (psilocin) compares to grams of dried mushrooms?

        • Servetus says:

          A psilocybin treatment for me is once every two to three months depending on what’s happened in my life and how I feel about it. I also boost the effects with a daily dose of escitalopram and weed, both effective anti-depressants. A long period of severe stress like the present election cycle will require a more immediate treatment. As for determining the number of milligrams in a dose, I can’t say. I take enough of it to have a noticeable response (trip) in a quiet setting. The next time I pick some up I’ll ask the supplier if they’ve determined or know the dosage per shroom or weight of material.

          As for the fascists, even if they seize power in the short term, they never keep it. They make too many enemies.
          I confronted this crap in the 60s and 70s. It’s purely tribal. They lost it then, they’ll lose it in the near future. A good read on the present political situation is a book by Bill Bishop called “The Big Sort”, which explores tribalism from socio-cultural-anthropological point of view. Knowing what’s happening and why helps counter it.

      • NorCalNative says:

        For Son of Sam Walton. Sorry to go off-topic on this. Do you have any experience or knowledge with Kratom? I’m looking for pain management. In an article at Project CBD former medical dude at Americans for Safe Access Jahan Marcu PhD called Kratom “the CBD of opiates.”

        I’ve tried a few beginner doses and met with mild euphoria. Anyone reading this that has Kratom insights is welcome to reply.

        • Son of Sam Walton says:

          NorCal, there was a moment when Dispos were dishing out a dozen or so pills of Kratom (two different kinds to pick from for this or that reason) for free in our early days for first-time customers and I found that a few helped with sleep. Then again, way before Oklahoma medicalized their cannabis, we had kratom in the form of tar and you could smoke it and it would act like a 5mg dose of a Lortab. So, I’m probably the wrong person to ask with just a handful of experiences with it . . . I found it too weak to ever give me any desire to ever buy it back in the cheap K2 fake pot and $60 an 8th illegal pot days, so I only do it if it is for free.

          And, Kratom’s use has only been in recorded history since the 1800s, right–mostly due to the Opium Wars? And the locals of the region have long ingested and used the native plants, fish, and animals that could have offered the bodies a natural ‘cure’ from long-term harms found in the drug if there are any negative side effects . . . or it could be just fine. Like large doses of nutmeg will make you trip really hard, but doing it over time is bad for the liver. We don’t know all about it and the reason why is probably its short history of use is due to cannabis, booze, and opium already being prevalent in that region.

  4. Servetus says:

    Strange stories of fentanyl hysteria and the real harm the urban myths are causing:

    “She said her body went numb within 10 minutes after picking up the dollar. She said she could barely talk or breathe before passing out…(they) believe the dollar she picked up was laced with fentanyl.” […]

    “Deputy Faiivae tested three bags found in a suspect’s car using a portable narcotics analyzer in the back of the patrol vehicle…the first two bags tested presumptive positive for fentanyl…when he stood up ‘he began to feel lightheaded and fell down’…he was administered four doses of Narcan…Deputy Faiivae’s field training officer recounted that Deputy Faiivae ‘was OD’ing the whole way to the hospital.'” […]

    The looming specter of fentanyl in news reports has become inescapable. But more often what is shared is misinformation rather than accurate facts.

    These aren’t just isolated cases of bad reporting. It’s a societal problem. On a recent episode of the primetime CBS show, NCIS: Hawai’i, a sailor with abrasions on his feet steps in a tide pool containing a bag of fentanyl and is shown dying from a fentanyl overdose in under a minute. […]

    Full article at MedPage Today – “Fear, Loathing, and Fentanyl Misinformation — Misleading fentanyl narratives are pervasive and cause very real harm”:

    • Servetus says:

      Top 3 comments re Fentanyl hysteria story at MedPage:

      DL_RN — A few of my patients’ family members ask that we not use the ‘F” word, but refer to what we were putting on them as a “pain patch” since the patients were hyper scared of the “F” drug. So every three days ‘OK Mr/Mrs pt, here is your new “pain patch”…>

      Dr_Bob – I think the author’s point is that the color doesn’t matter. Colored fentanyl has been available for years if not decades on the illicit market. And no one is putting it in kids goodie bags at Halloween, which is what the panic stricken headlines suggested…>

      gjc Senior_IT_MD – Your thoughts and experiences mirror mine in the 1980s. If fentanyl were readily absorbed through the skin, the number of affected anesthesia staff and residents would have seen it banned long ago. I, too, used extremely high doses in cardiac procedures with no real ill effects…>

      For all 53 comments so far:

  5. Servetus says:

    Insomnia medications could help curb drug and alcohol addictions:

    8-NOV-2022 – Rutgers researchers think they have identified a biological process for drug and alcohol addiction and believe existing insomnia treatments could be used to reduce or eliminate cravings.

    A review in the December 2022 issue Biological Psychiatry and previously published online explains how ongoing work at the Rutgers Brain Health Institute and elsewhere demonstrates that the brain’s orexin system – which regulates sleep/wake states, reward systems and mood ­– motivates drug-seeking behavior. They report that many drugs of abuse increase orexin production in both animal and human brains and that blocking this system reverses addiction in animals. Another study has even demonstrated that one of the three orexin-blocking sleep aids approved for insomnia treatment reduces opioid cravings in human subjects.

    “There’s still much to discover about how orexin drives drug craving, but we know more than enough to justify testing orexin antagonists in clinical trials as addiction treatments,” said Gary Aston-Jones, coauthor of the review and director of the Brain Health Institute. “We’re applying for funding from the National Institutes of Health and looking to hire a physician-scientist with clinical trial experience to lead these efforts.” […]

    AAAS Public Science News Release: Sleeping medications used for insomnia may combat drug and alcohol addiction: Rutgers research shows how changes in the brain promote drug-seeking behavior and why some insomnia medications may block it

    Biological Psychiatry: Orexin Reserve: A Mechanistic Framework for the Role of Orexins (Hypocretins) in Addiction

    Morgan H. James, Gary Aston-Jones.

  6. Servetus says:

    German research team discovers the body’s own cannabinoids widen the bronchial tubes:

    17-NOV-2022…researchers … focused on the body’s own cannabinoid system, specifically on its effect in the blood vessels of the lungs. The best known endogenous cannabinoid is anandamide. “Since our results show that anandamide dilates the bronchial tubes, we wanted to understand the exact mechanism behind it,” explains Daniela Wenzel.

    Enzyme degrades cannabinoid:

    It quickly emerged that the two best-known receptors for anandamide (CB1 and CB2) are irrelevant for this regulation. Therefore, there must be an alternative signalling pathway through which the messenger substance anandamide acts on the bronchial tubes.

    Daniela Wenzel and her team showed that this alternative pathway uses an enzyme called fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH). FAAH degrades anandamide, producing e.g. arachidonic acid, which in turn is converted to prostaglandin E2. “We know that prostaglandin E2 can dilate the bronchial tubes,” points out Annika Simon. Prostaglandin E2 acts via certain receptors and leads to an increase in the messenger substance cAMP (cyclic adenosine monophosphate). “It is precisely this, the increase in cAMP, that is targeted by well-established inhalation medications against asthma,” says Daniela Wenzel. So, the goal is the same, but the path is different.

    Anandamide deficiency in asthma:

    Wenzel and her team gradually deciphered the signalling pathway. They revealed that the enzyme FAAH is located both in the smooth muscle of the bronchial tubes and in the ciliated epithelium. The increase in cAMP after anandamide administration could be detected both in the mouse model and in human bronchial cells. In order to find out whether anandamide could also works in asthma patients, the team used a disease model in mice where certain substances can be used to create artificial asthma. In these animals, too, the administration of anandamide led to a widening of the bronchial tubes. “This means that asthma doesn’t result in resistance to anandamide,” explains Daniela Wenzel. Moreover, the researchers found that asthmatic animals have less anandamide and other endocannabinoids in their bronchial system than healthy animals. “Therefore, it’s possible that this anandamide deficiency is one of the causes of bronchial asthma,” concludes Daniela Wenzel. […]

    Ruhr Universitat Bochum News Release: The body’s own cannabinoids widen the bronchial tubes

    Nature Communications: The endocannabinoid anandamide is an airway relaxant in health and disease

    Annika Simon, Thomas von Einem, Alexander Seidinger, Michaela Matthey, Laura Bindila, Daniela Wenzel.

  7. Daniel Williams says:

    You guys are tripping all over your limp dicks praising Biden’s decree. But just how many prisoners were released? Zero.

    Sad to witness a once-influential site devolve into such nonsensical and partisan gibberish.

  8. atrocity says:

    Yeah, I should instead trip over my massive, hard dick while insisting that Tr*mp is going to legalize because he’s a “businessman” while I change his diapers.

    Or, now that I think of it, I could instead not be a treason-apologist moron Nazi enabler.

  9. Servetus says:

    Chemically linking fentanyl to sodium pockets within nerve cell receptors can block the drug’s harmful side effects while still remaining effective for pain:

    One of the most abundant elements on Earth – sodium – may hold the key for scientists to develop opioids or other drugs with far fewer side effects.

    In a study published Wednesday by Nature, scientists from USC, Washington University in St. Louis and Stanford University demonstrated that by chemically linking fentanyl to the sodium pockets that exist within nerve cell receptors, they could block the drug’s harmful side effects and still reduce pain.

    Further study is needed but the results hold promise – not just for drug development but for addressing the nation’s crisis of addiction and overdose. Nearly 70,000 Americans died in 2020 of an opioid overdose – most of them from the synthetic opioid, fentanyl, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse. In 1990s, the Food and Drug Administration approved the use of fentanyl to ease severe pain in cancer patients but it has since made its way into the streets, worsening the national crisis of opioid abuse.

    “In its current form, fentanyl is like a weapon of mass destruction,” said Vsevolod Katritch, a computational scientist at the Bridge Institute at USC Michelson Center for Convergent Bioscience and a corresponding author of the study. “Our new collaborative work suggests that we could redesign the drug in such a way that we convert this frequent overdose killer to a much more benign but still effective analgesic.” […]

    AAAS Public Science News Release: A safer opioid? Scientists are onto something: Promising results from a mouse and cell study give hope that scientists can block ill effects world’s deadliest opioid, fentanyl, and possibly other drugs

    Nature: Structure-based design of bitopic ligands for the µ-opioid receptor

  10. Servetus says:

    Addiction research has discovered hundreds of genes across diverse groups of people that affect rates of alcohol and tobacco use:

    7-DEC-2022 – Penn State researchers co-led a large genetic study that identified more than 2,300 genes predicting alcohol and tobacco use after analyzing data from more than 3.4 million people. They said a majority of these genes were similar among people with European, African, American and Asian ancestries.

    Alcohol and tobacco use are associated with approximately 15% and 5% of deaths worldwide, respectively, and are linked with chronic conditions like cancer and heart disease. Although the environment and culture can affect a person’s use and the likelihood of becoming addicted to these substances, genetics is also a contributing factor, according to Penn State College of Medicine researchers. They helped identify around 400 genes that are associated with certain alcohol and tobacco use behaviors in people in a prior research study.

    “We’ve now identified more than 1,900 additional genes that are associated with alcohol and tobacco use behaviors,” said Dajiang Liu, professor and vice chair for research in the Department of Public Health Sciences. “A fifth of the samples used in our analysis were from non-European ancestries, which increases the relevance of these findings to a diverse population.” […]

    According to Liu, future research will focus on diving deeper into their findings. A majority of the genes the team identified have unknown functions, so the researchers will try to understand their functions and how changes in those genes, their function and interaction with the environment affect the risk for addictive behaviors. He also said increasing the diversity of genetic samples in the datasets will help the team develop predictive risk models for individuals from diverse ancestries. […]

    Genetic risk factor scores could someday help identify people at high risk for substance misuse […]

    Medical Express News Release: Many genes linked to alcohol and tobacco use are shared among diverse ancestries

    Nature: Genetic diversity fuels gene discovery for tobacco and alcohol use

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