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University of Leicester expert to share insights about cannabis-based medicine

An expert from the University of Leicester hopes her public lecture about the emergence of cannabis-based medicine in the UK will encourage a better understanding about its development for use.

Scientist and historian, Dr Yewande Okuleye, will share insights, expertise and knowledge to chart the course of the development of cannabis-based medicines.

She will take her audience on a ‘journey of rediscovery’ at the free-to-attend lecture in the Frank and Katherine May Lecture Theatre at the university’s Henry Wellcome Building on Monday, 3 June from 5.30pm.

The interdisciplinary scholar hopes her expert knowledge will contextualise the emergence of cannabis-based medicine in healthcare, tracking its continued development in recent years.

Yewande said:

“We are entering a new dawn of possibility for cannabis medicine; however, the road is fraught with regulatory hurdles.

“Currently, the UK is a world leader in the production of cannabinoid and cannabis- based medicine and we already have two cannabis-based prescription medicines; Sativex, used to treat spasticity in multiple sclerosis and Epidiolex, used to treat childhood epilepsy.

“However, patients want access to a new category of cannabis-based products which have not been regulated as medicines in the UK. How is this going to be regulated? Will doctors prescribe this? Or are there going to be more campaigns and direct-action protests, to find ways to develop an alternative framework for this category?”

Six months ago UK laws changed following Home Secretary Sajid Javid’s response to the public campaign surrounding 12-year-old Billy Caldwell’s lack of access to medicinal cannabis to control his epileptic seizures. Specialist doctors can now prescribe medicinal cannabis to patients with certain conditions.

To further complicate matters, certain cannabis-based products such as CBD oil are being marketed as ‘well-being’ products. Yewande will cover the regulatory and ethical implications of this and invites members of the public and medical colleagues to attend the 60-minute lecture and be part of the dialogue.

Booking is not necessary.


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