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WSU creates Center for Cannabis Policy, Research, Outreach

June 2, 2021 GMT

PULLMAN, Wash. (AP) — Leaders of Washington State University have voted to establish a full research center with nearly 100 scientists working on a diverse range of cannabis-related projects.

The newly christened Center for Cannabis Policy, Research and Outreach was officially approved by the WSU Faculty Senate and Board of Regents in May.

The Pullman school started research into cannabis in 2011, even before Washington state became the first in the U.S. to legalize recreational marijuana the following year. The formal designation as a research center signifies its importance and WSU’s commitment to studying the growing industry.

“WSU is one of the leading universities in the country on cannabis research,” said cannabis center director Michael McDonell.

In the past six years, WSU researchers have engaged in 50 projects with nearly $10 million in funding. Recent projects include an exploration of behavioral and biological predictors of problem cannabis use that was recently awarded a $400,000 grant. Center researchers have also been studying how Washington’s 2012 law legalizing cannabis has impacted law enforcement.