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The Science of Marijuana Paperback – Oct 15 2001


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press; 1 edition (Oct. 15 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0195151100
  • ISBN-13: 978-0195151107
  • Product Dimensions: 20.6 x 14 x 1.6 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 340 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #2,327,163 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents


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Marijuana (cannabis) is among the most widely used of all psychoactive drugs. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Format: Paperback
This is an interesting read about the science of marijuana. It has lots of information for anybody who is interested in the science of cannabis and the medical issues surrounding it. The scientific evidence in terms of medical value is now extremely abundant, so much so that Canada recently legalized it for medical use and recreational use although this is still the subject of some minor controversy. Who can deny people medicine? Well the US government has been doing that simply to prevent cross-border marijuana trade with South America for years. South America has the best climate for marijuana production and could certainly output it cheaply. This is a massive economic fear for the current US government. The bottom line remains the same. Children should not do drugs. The one thing that is very interesting is that regardless of cannabis prohibition some children still use cannabis, so prohibition is pretty much useless in curbing that problem. Cannabis does not have a physical habit forming potential but possibly a psychological one. We know that the physical habit forming ideologies are not valid because the FDA has always rejected cannabis-dependence treatment pills that some pharmaceutical giants have tried to push onto the market. This is because the pharmaceutical giants have not been adequately able to prove the existence of physical cannabis dependence. The Gateway drug theory is also invalid which is why it is not brought up here. The EU drug commission simply does not refer to it anymore. The US government does use it but it is as incorrect as saying - people who ride bicycles will grow up to ride motorbikes. There is also the negative gateway effect.Read more ›
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Format: Hardcover
This is a highly readable volume that delivers a superb overview of the history, pharmacology and sociology of marijuana. Although the non-scientist may find it tough going in a few places, Iversen does an admirable job of presenting the technical issues with clarity. More importantly, the objectivity is unassailable. If you are looking for the book to tell you that marijuana smoking is perfectly safe you will be disappointed. Equally, if you seek justification of hysterical anti-drug rhetoric you will be unfulfilled. But, if you want to be educated and informed so that you can make your own judgement this is a great place to start. Highly recommended!
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Format: Hardcover
A superb, accessible, scientific assessment of the pharmacology. medicinal uses, health consequences, and recreational effects of the most popular illicit drug in the world. Iversen stays as objective as possible in his discussions of this highly volatile and political topic. He puts nails in the coffins of many marijuana myths, including those related to alleged chromosomal damage and dramatic increases in THC content. He offers keen historical perspectives, and depicts difficult scientific ideas with ease.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Mark J Holley on March 11 2004
Format: Hardcover
First off as a pro-legalization person i must say this is not a book written by a "hippy" or Drug Prohibitionist; Leslie L. Iversen is Professor of Pharmacology at University of Oxford, he is the right person to be talking about THE SCIENCE OF MARIJUANA. This book helped me understand how Cannabis (a.k.a. Marijuana, Hemp, etc.) affects the mind based on the research & studies of the past. The book speaks of what is known about the interactions of the substance on the body & mind while not determining the effects of most of the long term health effects which are not known well enoft for Dr. Iversen to conclude. A main reason for the lack of research on Cannabis is because of, yes the U.S. government and others who would not allow any unbaised research after Pres. Nixion had the Schaffer report (which recommend full legalization of Marijuana) blew up in his face. This book gets into the technical working of Thc and is quite fascinating at times. Althought I would not reccomend it to those who can't handle a long books. So it might not be the best book to educate your teenager about the harms of drugs (even though i read it at 17). The book does leave you well informed on the medical aspects of Cannabis. I would say that this would be good to read if you want to take a stand of either side of the drug debate, cause if all the info you go by is form the anti-drug campain or NORML then you are uninformed and should shut-up if dont atleast take the time to find out the half of the whole story that surrounds Cannabis.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By E. S. Dummit on Aug. 30 2001
Format: Hardcover
As a child psychiatrist who treats adolescents with substance dependence disorders, I was very pleased to read this well written scientific review from Dr. Iversen, a pharmacologist. It really does appear to be reasonably unbiased on the question of whether cannabis has medicinal value, and attempts to review the scientific evidence in a rational way. However, the scientific evidence so far is nowhere near the level of proof of safety and efficacy required to get new medications approved for use by the FDA, and Dr. Iversen conveniently ignores this vital issue.
Additionally, he glosses over the very real and known physical and mental health risks associated with heavy chronic marijuana smoking. ... His perspective is that of scientist concerned with the effects of THC, rather than mine, as a physician concerned with the mental and physical health of children who seek my help. I generally agree with his conclusions, that cannabis may have some potential for therapeutic use if we can find a way to dissociate its adverse effects and its habit-forming potential from its therapeutic effects. However, the current science is far from achieving such a goal. It concerns me that Dr. Iversen has left a very vital branch of biomedical science out of his review, namely, the epidemiology, comorbidity, and health consequences of cannabis abuse and dependence. While it is true that most people who smoke pot occasionally are probably not going to become addicted or escalate use into more dangerous drugs, it remains the major "gateway drug" by which adolescents are introduced into the addictive downward spiral that can destroy their lives, if they are one of the unfortunate who are biologically predisposed to addiction. The failure to review the science of cannabis dependence and the substantial scientific literature on the psychobiology of addictive behavior is the only major shortcoming of an otherwise fascinating book.
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