More Decisive Action Needed for Further Research in Medical Marijuana

Photo: JIS Photographer Science, Energy and Technology Minister, Dr. the Hon. Andrew Wheatley (right), is presented with a gift bag by Director of the University of the West Indies (UWI) Natural Products Institute and Senior Lecturer in the Faculty of Science and Technology, Dr. Rupika Delgoda, during Thursday’s (June 29) launch of a new medical publication titled – ‘Pharmacognosy: Fundamentals, Application and Strategy’, at the institution. The book provides comprehensive details on the branch of science dealing with the development of medicinal drugs and nutraceuticals derived from plants. The publication is a collaboration between Dr. Delgoda and Lecturer in the UWI’s Faculty of Medical Sciences, Dr. Simone Badal.

Story Highlights

  • Science, Energy and Technology Minister, Dr. the Hon. Andrew Wheatley, says more decisive stakeholder action is needed in determining the direction being taken as it relates to further research and development of Jamaica’s medical marijuana industry.
  • Dr. Wheatley pointed to what he said were the unlimited medicinal properties identified in locally cultivated marijuana, the quality of which is deemed synonymous with Jamaica’s climatic conditions and soil type.

Science, Energy and Technology Minister, Dr. the Hon. Andrew Wheatley, says more decisive stakeholder action is needed in determining the direction being taken as it relates to further research and development of Jamaica’s medical marijuana industry.

This, he emphasises, is imperative in ensuring that the country does not lose out on the opportunity to capitalise on the potential benefits to be derived.

He was speaking at the launch of the new publication – ‘Pharmacognosy: Fundamentals, Application and Strategy’, at the Faculty of Medical Sciences, University of the West Indies (UWI), Mona, on June 29.

Dr. Wheatley pointed to what he said were the unlimited medicinal properties identified in locally cultivated marijuana, the quality of which is deemed synonymous with Jamaica’s climatic conditions and soil type.

However, he said the industry has seen much greater foreign interest being expressed in establishing facilities in Jamaica to exploit the benefits, than local.

While acknowledging the benefits of external input in developing the medical marijuana industry, Dr. Wheatley stressed that “we have to look at what (interest) we have locally before looking outside for help.”

“Let us own the rights to our research…and not become second-hand users or owners of the products,” he added.

The new publication provides comprehensive details on the branch of science dealing with the development of medicinal drugs and other nutraceuticals derived from plants.

The book is a collaboration between Director of the Natural Products Institute and Senior Lecturer in the Faculty of Science and Technology at the UWI, Dr. Rupika Delgoda, and Lecturer in the University’s Faculty of Medical Sciences, Dr. Simone Badal.

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