MANILA — Farmers in the Cordillera region who are praying for the legalization of marijuana in the country will not be helped any by the pioneering study conducted in the University of Leiden (UL) in The Netherlands.
The study confirmed the falsity of the claim that smoking grass stimulates creativity.
Published in the October 7, 2014 issue of Psychopharmacology, the study, which was designed as a randomized, double-blind, between groups research by psychologist Dr. Lorenzo Calzato, doctoral student Mikael A. Kowal, Arno Hazekamp, Henk van Steenbergen, Nicja van der Wee, Jeffrey Durieux, Meriem Maras and Bernhard Hommel, used marijuana with 22 milligrams (mg) of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) for heavy users, marijuana with 5.5 mg for the other group and a placebo for the last group of 18 people.
The study is the first as far as analyzing the impact of marijuana on creative thinking, an issue that has been debated since the 1960s, particularly when the hippie movement was born in San Francisco.
Recently, some lawmakers supported the legalization of marijuana, a cash crop in the Cordillera, and argued that since cannabis has been legalized in some US states, the Philippines should follow and cash in on the demand for recreational and medical marijuana.
Marijuana consumption is legal in The Netherlands, where the study was conducted, but is still illegal in the Philippines.
Colzato and Kowal said the test on the impact of THC, which was isolated in 1964 by Israeli researchers Raphael Mechoulam and Yehiel Gaoni of the Weizmann Institute of Science, on divergent and convergent creativity was conducted by using vaporizers to ensure the systematic ingestion of THC.
Research showed that THC has a moderate analgesic effect and it is used to treat pain by altering the transmitter release on dorsal root ganglion of the spinal cord in the periaqueductal gray.