There is only one federally legal cannabis farm in the United States and it’s located in Mississippi’s state university. The cannabis farm’s director, pharmacologist Mahmoud ElSohly, revealed in a podcast interview that he is developing a new tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) eye drop. A treatment for glaucoma is the intended goal for the eye drops and the full body high associated with THC will not be present or experienced by the user. However, the usual medicinal avoidance of THC in medical cannabis products is not the intended route here, the THC presence is intentional. It is explained by the director of University of Mississippi’s Marijuana Research Project that the THC in the eye drops can relieve pressure from within the eye.
“The best way to treat glaucoma is not to take a drug that will affect your brain, affect your ability to function, the whole rest of your body just to lower the pressure inside the eyes. The way to do this is to develop, let’s say, eye drops, eye drops from marijuana,” said ElSohly.
The advacncement of the THC eye drops developed by ElSohly include a dramatic technological workaround on the properties of THC. THC is naturally a lilpophilic, or oil, that doesn’t penetrate into the eye and wouldn’t be able to lower pressure. ElSohly’s developed THC drops include a modified THC molecule that allows it to enter the eye and release THC to lower pressure.
“You don’t feel any psychological activity, it doesn’t even get into your blood. It’s all localized in the eye. We have this product now that is being licensed and being developed as an eye drop.”
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