Medical Marijuana Research Update: June 2004

NIDA Director Dr. Nora Volkow responds to MAPS’ letter of May 19, as well as MAPS’ May 24, 2004 letters to HHS Secretary Tommy Thompson and Director of the National Institutes of Health Dr. Elias Zerhouni. Dr. Volkow writes, “As you know, NIDA is just one of the participants on the HHS review panel…It is not NIDA’s role to set policy in this area…Moreover, it is not NIDA’s mission to study the medicinal uses of marijuana or to advocate for the establishment of facilities to support this research. Therefore, I am sorry but I do not believe that we can be of help to you in resolving these concerns.”

Conspicuously missing from Dr. Volkow’s letter was any information whatsoever about where in the process is the review of the vaporizer protocol. As a result, MAPS is now considering a lawsuit against HHS/NIDA claiming “unreasonable delay” under the Administrative Procedures Act.