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Mar 18, 2017 10:56 AM EDT

Oxford University Allocates £10 Million For Medical Marijuana Program


Oxford University has confirmed that it has allocated £10 million for its medical marijuana program. It will study the benefits of marijuana in treating pain, cancer and inflammatory diseases.

This came after a few Members of Parliament have called on a law to allow the use of cannabis for medicine. Polls suggest that about 58 percent of people support the move, Telegraph reported.

Several studies in the past years have shown the medical value of marijuana in treating various diseases. This includes multiple sclerosis, epilepsy and arthritis as well as for dealing with nerve pain.

Oxford University's program is entitled the Cannabis Research Plan. It will be a partnership with the institution and venture capital company Kingsley Capital Partners, who are investing £10 million (about $12.36 million) for the development of a global center of excellence in cannabinoid research.

Existing studies have already began to produce interesting findings which could lead to new treatments. Prof Ahmed Ahmed of Oxford's Nuffield Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology said that this field can have a great impact in creating new therapeutic opportunities for cancer patients.

Sir Patrick Stewart, known for his role as Professor X in the "X-Men" film series, expressed his support for the project. He revealed that medical marijuana helped him with ortho-arthritis which affected both of his hands.

According to The Independent, researchers will be looking for cutting-edge medical therapies by studying the molecular cellular and systems mechanisms of cannabinoids. The future findings are expected to make better therapies which will improve the lives of millions of patients.

CNBC noted that medical marijuana is not yet permitted in the U.K. Only cannabis-based ingredient, cannabidol, has recently been recognized as a medicine. Last year, a cross-party group of U.K. politicians urged the government to legalize medical cannabis, saying that there was enough evidence supporting its usefulness in treating several chronic conditions.

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