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Scientists Breed Sober Weed

Israel has developed a strand of marijuana with all the medical benefits—minus the high.

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Does the "high" help the medicine go down?
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By May Wilkerson

05/31/12

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In a piece of sobering news for medical pot smokers: a strand of marijuana has been developed that can cure your physical ills, without getting you stoned. Israeli scientists, seeking to "help" those smoking marijuana for medical purposes, have cultivated a marijuana plant that is identical to normal pot, minus the plant's illustrious after-effects. "It has the same scent, shape and taste as the original plant—it's all the same—but the numbing sensation that users are accustomed to has disappeared," says Tzahi Klein, head of development at the firm where the strand was developed. The new strand of weed also does not cause users to get the munchies. Scientists developing the sober species sought to neutralize the effects of THC—the element of cannabis that gets you "numb" (or high)—and to increase the effects of cannabidiol, or "CBD", which has been shown to relieve convulsion, anxiety, inflammation and nausea, as well as inhibit cancer cell growth. CBD may also be used to treat various psychiatric disorders, such as schizophrenia. Medical marijuana, which is legal in Israel, has been approved for use by about 6,000 Israelis with a range of illnesses. In the US, where medical pot is only legal in certain states, it remains to be seen how pro-medical marijuana activists will respond to news of sober weed. With joy? Grief? Hysterical laughter? All of the above?

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