California Awards $20M in Cannabis Research Grants

The California Department of Cannabis Control this week announced the awarding of $20 million in cannabis research grants. The grants will fund studies investigating medical cannabis, cannabis cultivation, cannabis industry regulations, and more.

Full story after the jump.

The California Department of Cannabis Control (DCC) on Tuesday awarded $20 million in cannabis research grants to 16 academic institutions in the state. Rasha Salama, DCC chief deputy director, said the studies funded by the grants “will provide valuable insights on topics of interest to California’s consumers, businesses, and policy makers.” 

“It is the department’s aspiration that these studies will advance the body of scientific research, further our understanding of cannabis, and aid to the continued development and refinement of the legal framework.” — Salama in a statement 

Eight of the studies are focused on cannabis potency, two on medical cannabis use, one on the health of the state’s cannabis industry, two on monopolies and unfair competition, one on California legacy cannabis genetics and genetic sequencing, one on licensed and unlicensed cannabis cultivation throughout the state, and one on cannabis cultivation among Hmong farmers. 

Studies at the University of California, Los Angeles were awarded the most funds – more than $7 million – covering six projects, including evaluating synthetic and semi-synthetic cannabinoids, a comparative study of the effects of concentrate use versus flower, interactions between delta-9 THC and CBD, medical cannabis use practices, the state of medical cannabis in California, and assessing the health of the state cannabis program. 

Three projects at the University of California, Berkeley were awarded about $2.5 million by the state. The studies will investigate monopolistic and unfair competition in the state’s cannabis industry, the effects of licensed and unlicensed cannabis cultivation, and cannabis farming among Hmong farmers. 

Two projects at the University of California, San Diego were awarded about $1 million by the state. Those studies are focused on the effects of cannabis on young adults. Researchers at the University of California, San Fransisco were awarded $904,052 for a study also focused on the effects of cannabis use on young adults.

The University of California, Irvine was awarded $2 million for a study on the short- and long-term effects of high-THC products. 

Researchers at University of California, Davis were awarded $856,881 for a study focused on vaping cannabinoids. 

A Cal Poly, Humboldt project was awarded nearly $2.7 million to study legacy California cannabis genetics, while Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo was awarded $444,643 to study the state’s cannabis regulations 

In all, the DCC received 98 proposals and said the accepted studies were chosen based on their strong scientific methodology, their ability to provide useful information for policymaking, their advancement of public understanding of cannabis, and their potential to generate foundational research that will support exponential future knowledge.      

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