Mixed martial arts league Ultimate Fighting Championship has announced the details of their partnership with Aurora Cannabis for clinical trials to study the efficacy of CBD on wound care, recovery, injury, pain, and inflammation, CNN reports.
Dr. Jeff Chen, director of UCLA’s Cannabis Research Initiative, who is not involved with the project, told CNN that the study is right out of the “pharma textbook” – meaning a company designs a study and supplies both the research product and funding.
Jason Dyck, Ph.D., the chairman of Aurora’s Global Scientific Oversight Committee who joined the company’s board in 2015, will lead the study along with Aurora’s Vice President of Global Research and Medical Affairs Kelly Narine, Ph.D, and a team of researchers from the UFC Performance Institute in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Dr. Duncan French, UFC vice president of performance, said the collaboration with Aurora “is the best way to educate ourselves and our fighters about the impact of CBD on MMA athletes and our sport.”
“We want to apply science and see where it leads us. Ideally, these studies will give us the clarity we need to determine the effectiveness of hemp-derived CBD on athlete health and injury recovery.” — French, in a statement, via CNN
In 2016, UFC fighter Nate Diaz came under fire for his use of a CBD vape pen during a post-fight press conference, which led to an investigation by the World Anti-Doping Agency. During the presser, Diaz said CBD “helps with the healing process and inflammation” and that he used it during training, and before and after fights to “make [his] life a better place.”
Last month, the UFC announced heavyweight Alexey Oleynik signed a deal to represent ETFMG Alternative Harvest ETF, a cannabis-focused, publicly-traded exchange fund, during fights.