Both US Senators from Massachusetts Support UMass Amherst Project

Today, MAPS received a copy of an Oct. 20, 2003, letter that Senators Kennedy and Kerry signed and sent to DEA Administrator Karen Tandy, expressing their strong support for the UMass Amherst marijuana production facility. The letter was fantastic and will make it significantly more difficult for DEA to reject the application.

The Senators’ wrote:

“We are writing to express our strong support for the application by the University of Massachusetts Amherst for registration as a bulk manufacturer of marijuana for distribution to researchers in clinical investigations authorized by the Food and Drug Administration and non-clinical investigations at DEA-licensed laboratories…. We believe that the National Institute on Drug Abuse facility at the University of Mississippi has an unjustifiable monopoly on the production of marijuana for legitimate medical and research purposes in the United States…The current lack of such competition may well result in the production of lower-quality research-grade marijuana, which in turn jeopardizes important research into the therapeutic effects of marijuana for patients undergoing chemotherapy or suffering from AIDS, glaucoma, or other diseases.”

This is a major step forward in MAPS’ efforts to create the conditions necessary for a serious medical marijuana drug development effort aimed with FDA-approval of the prescription use of marijuana, with the two essential elements being an independent source of supply of high-potency marijuana and FDA-approval of the use of vaporizer in clinical research.

To show what an incredible accomplishment it was to obtain support from Senator Kerry for medical marijuana research, see the text of a letter he sent on October 21, 2003 to a constituent in which he expresses his reasons for supporting the current criminalization of the non-medical use of marijuana.