Johns Hopkins University has dropped out of a study exploring whether cannabis can help relieve post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms, according to a report from Reason.com. The study, funded by a $2.2 million grant to the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS) from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, will still be conducted by researchers at the University of Colorado, University of Pennsylvania, and the Scottsdale Research Institute in Phoenix, Arizona.
In a statement, a spokesperson for Johns Hopkins University indicated they had withdrawn from the study because “[their] goals for this study weren’t in alignment,” noting they had not yet enrolled any study participants.
“Johns Hopkins remains dedicated to helping military veterans, finding improved treatments for PTSD, and conducting innovative research to enhance our understanding of both the risks and benefits of cannabis/cannabinoids,” the statement said.
Brad Burge, communications director for MAPS, said that the university wanted to “remain focused on clinical research” while MAPS was not only interested in the science but also “the policy issues surrounding the science related to the [National Institutes on Drug Abuse] monopoly on marijuana for research.”
“We think the study will still succeed without Johns Hopkins’ involvement, that we’ll be able to enroll all the participants we need at the Phoenix site, and that the study will still have sufficient diversity of participant population,” Burge said in the report.
Researchers initially expected at least 76 military veterans to enroll in the study throughout the four sites, which is expected to take at least two years to complete.