Recently, the State of Michigan granted Wayne State University $7 million to investigate the potential therapeutic effects of cannabis to improve military veteran patients’ quality of life and reduce post-traumatic stress disorder and depressive symptoms that can precede suicide. In this episode, lead researcher Leslie Lundahl, Ph.D., talks with host Darrell Dawsey about her team’s research, the grant and the evolution of public opinion about the social acceptability of marijuana.
Lundahl’s overall research objective is to advance our understanding of addictive behaviors, with the goal of developing new treatment approaches and improving existing options for individuals who seek help for their substance use disorders. To this end, she has focused her scientific endeavors in several key areas: identifying factors (e.g., personality, environmental, pharmacological) that are potential determinants of drug seeking behavior; developing and refining human laboratory models (e.g., cue-induced and stress-induced craving/use, drug discrimination, subjective effects, choice procedures) to efficiently and rigorously test mechanisms of action that underlie drug-taking behavior and contribute to relapse, as well as test candidate medications for pharmacotherapy; understanding factors that might predict treatment retention and treatment outcomes; and using this knowledge to improve existing treatment options and guide development of new, better-targeted treatment approaches for substance use disorders. Although most of her work involves cannabinoids, she has also conducted studies on alcohol, nicotine, MDMA, cocaine and opioids.
Read about the $7 million grant to WSU to study marijuana’s potential therapeutic effects on vets https://today.wayne.edu/medicine/news/2021/08/19/wayne-state-school-of-medicine-wins-7-million-from-state-to-explore-therapeutic-effects-of-cannabis-for-veterans-44891
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