When neuroscience is interested in cannabis

Meet Dr Michele Ross, one of the best neuroscience specialist who specializes in cannabis.

Dr. Michele Ross does not have the usual profile of a cannabis advocate. As a neuroscientist who has spent years studying the effects of drug addiction in an academic setting, she didn't expect to become one of the most ardent neuroscientists, supporters of cannabis in the United States.

Neuroscientist, medical cannabis, Neuroscience
Dr. Michele Ross, Neuroscientist

A passion for the brain and neuroscience from an early age

Dr. Ross has been interested in brain health since childhood.

"I had been interested in brains since I was five years old."

Her academic and scientific career began with no particular interest in cannabis or any other narcotic substance, other than those she studied in the addiction lab.

“As a teacher, I published my first article on cannabinoids and neurogenesis, which is the study of the growth of brain cells, ”she said.

Working on this article alerted her to the benefits of cannabis. However, she still had not taken cannabis into consideration and had not used it.

Discover cannabis as a medicine

Everything changed when she began to experience her own health problems.

“I had a lot of health problems that modern medicine couldn't treat,” says Dr. Michele Ross. “For example, I had two nerves in my arm, the radial nerve and the ulnar nerve, which went dead. I woke up one day and I couldn't move my hand and it was very painful. " 

After exploring various medical options and dealing with potentially risky surgery, she began looking for alternatives.

An effectiveness of cannabis treatment

“The only thing that worked was ingesting cannabis, using cannabis cream and getting masser for about four hours. He ended up releasing theinflammation which prevented the functioning of my hand. "

Her defense of cannabis deepened when she met her husband. He is a cannabis grower and dispensary owner in California, and an avid member of the cannabis community.

“It was really combining my science with my personal passion, and realizing that modern medicine doesn't work for everyone,” she says. “Whatever the diagnosis, whatever your label. "-" What matters is that you have a treatment that works and brings you back to health. That's what cannabis is and that's why I'm so passionate about being an advocate for it. " 

Conspiracy to write about cannabis

Dr Ross may be a neuroscientist and a celebrity, both inside and outside of the cannabis world, but unfortunately that doesn't mean she's immune to the legal issues, which are so common in the cannabis industry. cannabis.

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In 2013, her home in Los Angeles was raided, and she eventually faced a charge of conspiracy.

“I argued my case after a year, but I was harassed by the legal system. I was accused of conspiring to write books about cannabis, and in fact, that's what I was doing! She laughs.

She talks about the incident quite lightly. But the raid clearly shocked her husband, who feared for her as a cannabis advocate.

A traumatic experience facing the authorities

“We were traumatized for a long time after the raid,” she says, admitting that the incident left her with post-traumatic stress disorder.

However, she insists that this only strengthened her resolve and commitment to defending the plant.

“It motivated me even more. For me, going through this whole process, realizing how difficult it was as a patient, how frustrating and scary this process was. I have to make sure this never happens to someone else again, ”she said.

Indeed, the conspiracy charge did nothing to discourage his work. In fact, she released her second book in March, titled Vitamin Weed, on endocannabinoid deficiencies and how to avoid them.

A gap between cannabis and academia

When asked if she is discriminated against for her unusual scientific choice, Ross admits that many scientists don't take her seriously. So they stop the conversation before it even starts.

“Academics won't see you as a serious nonprofit person, or not a serious scientist,” she reveals. “When people hear it's non-profit cannabis, they just assume you're selling cannabis, and sometimes the conversation ends there. "

Even her former thesis supervisor, who gave Ross the first academic paper that sparked her interest in cannabinoids as a medicine, also assumed that she was just a drug trafficker on her feet. estale.

“What's interesting is that this lab has studied molecular psychiatry, looking for all these different treatments for drug addiction and other mental health issues,” she says. “Well, we know that CBD can be used as a treatment for different types of addiction. But I can't even have a conversation with these other scientists where medical cannabis isn't legal.

Raising an academic taboo on research around cannabis

“I hope more and more states will legalize, because these conversations are not taboo. People are starting to listen, but the big thing with science is that your lab will only exist as long as you have the money. And the person who writes the checks is the government. "-" As long as the government continues to say that this is a horrible drug, our research in the United States will not receive much positive support from scientists. "

She urges other scientists to reconsider their position on cannabis as a dangerous drug. She is a neuroscientist, patient with cannabis and activist.

“I wish more scientists would be patients and use cannabis. It could potentially open their minds to it. "

The circle is complete

Looking back on her career in cannabis, Dr. Michele Ross reflects on how her adventure began.

“I was writing these articles that demonized drug use, and some of the terms about any kind of drug use strike me as reckless. "

By studying the endocannabinoid system, she began to see the benefits of cannabis. It can be an alternative treatment to modern medicine.

“I want to make sure that this substance is available for everyone. It doesn't matter what city or state it is in, whatever country it is in, ”she emphasizes. “And I want to make sure they have access to safe and effective drugs. "

Tags : MedicineMedicalNeuroscienceEndocannabinoid system

The author Weed-master

Weed media broadcaster and communications manager specializing in legal cannabis. Do you know what they say? knowledge is power. Understand the science behind cannabis medicine, while staying up to date with the latest health related research, treatments and products. Stay up to date with the latest news and ideas on legalization, laws, political movements. Discover tips, tricks and how-to guides from the most seasoned growers on the planet as well as the latest research and findings from the scientific community on the medical qualities of cannabis.