Some news by NORML’s Weekly..

September 19, 2008

Cannabis May Halt Progression Of Multiple Sclerosis, Study Says

September 18, 2008 – London, United Kingdom

London, United Kingdom: Cannabinoids possess neuroprotective properties and may modify the progression of multiple sclerosis (MS), according to a review published in the journal Current Pharmaceutical Design.

Investigators at the London School of Medicine, Neuroscience Center reported that cannabinoids likely hold therapeutic value for MS patients beyond providing temporary symptomatic relief.

“Recent clinical trials may indeed suggest that cannabis has some potential to relieve, pain, spasms and spasticity in MS,” authors wrote. “In addition, CB(1) and CB(2) cannabinoid receptor stimulation may also have anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective potential. Therefore cannabinoids may not only offer symptom control but may also slow the neurodegenerative disease progression that ultimately leads to the accumulation of disability.”

A recent expert opinion paper published by the US National Multiple Sclerosis Society concluded that cannabis possesses the potential to treat MS symptoms as well as moderate disease progression, but stopped short of recommending that patients use it therapeutically.

Survey data indicates that an estimated one in four patients with MS use medicinal cannabis.

For more information, please contact Paul Armentano, NORML Deputy Director, at:

Full text of the study, “The endocannabinoid system and multiple sclerosis,” appears in the journal Current Pharmaceutical Design.

Note: “Cannabinoids may not only offer symptom control but may also slow … disease progression”


19th Annual Boston Freedom Rally Takes Place This Weekend

September 18, 2008 – Boston, MA, USA

Boston, MA: The Massachusetts chapter of NORML (MassCann) will hold the 19th annual Freedom Rally this Saturday, September 20, at the Boston Common in downtown Boston. The event is the largest marijuana law reform gathering on the east coast.

Speakers at this year’s event include NORML Executive Director Allen St. Pierre, NORML founder Keith Stroup, author Steve Bloom (Pot Culture), High Times Magazine associate publisher Rick Cusick, and Congressional candidate John Cunningham.

MassCann NORML will also be holding an awards banquet in Cambridge, Massachusetts, on Friday, September 19.

This November, Massachusetts’ voters will decide on a statewide ballot measure that seeks to replace criminal penalties for the possession of up to one ounce of marijuana with a civil fine of no more than $100.

For more information on the Freedom Rally, please visit:


Less Than One-Month Left To Register For NORML’s 2008 National Conference

September 18, 2008 – Washington, DC, USA

Washington, DC: NORML’s 37th annual national conference is less than one-month away, but attendees still have time to take advantage of discounted pricing by visiting:

This year’s ‘extravaganja’ takes place in Berkeley, California on Friday, October 17 and Saturday, October 18 at the Doubletree Hotel & Executive Meeting Center.

Plenary sessions at this year’s conference include:

Getting the Story Wrong: How the Media Lie About Cannabis
The Legal Marijuana Generation: Growing Up In The Age of Legal Pot
The War On Pot Is a War On Young People
What If We Arrested 20 Million Americans And Nobody Noticed?
The Politics of Marijuana And Health

In addition, on Sunday, October 19, NORML’s Legal Committee and the faculty of Oaksterdam University will co-sponsor a special, third-day session, entitled “Cannabusiness 102.” This unique, one-day seminar will outline step-by-step how to establish a legally-compliant medical marijuana business in the state of California.

Mark your calendar now and plan to join us as we focus on the latest marijuana policy developments at the state and federal levels, celebrate our victories over the past year, and hear from the world’s leading activists and cannabis law reform organizations. Mingle with celebrities and members of NORML’s staff and Board of Directors in one of the most cannabis friendly cities in the world.

Additional details about this year’s national conference – including patient accommodations, vending and sponsorship opportunities, conference scheduling, and a guide to NORML social events – are now available online at NORML’s 2008 Conference Registration page here:

For more information, please call (202) 483-5500. Answers to frequently asked questions (FAQs), about this year’s NORML Conference.


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