Dr. Ethan Russo, MD, Director of Research and Development of the International Cannabis and Cannabinoids Institute (ICCI), will give a keynote talk today in Exhibit Hall B at 9:10 a.m. The talk is titled “Cannabis and the Future of Psychiatry.” Russo recently spoke to us about his talk and what he hopes attendees will learn from it.
Can you give us a little preview of your keynote talk for the 2019 Cannabis Science Conference West?
Dr. Russo: I will be speaking on “Cannabis and the Future of Psychiatry.” It is actually a huge topic for a short lecture, but we will briefly discuss the history of cannabis for mood disorders, and address impairment, depression, insomnia, post-traumatic stress, schizophrenia, anxiety, and addiction—just a taste of each. The topic is very important to me, inasmuch as this has been a long neglected area of cannabis therapeutics, particularly in light of the fact that available conventional drugs are so poorly effective in many instances. I hope that people may gain a greater understanding for the potential of cannabis-based treatment with appropriate agents in these many conditions.
What do you hope attendees will take away from your keynote?
Russo: I hope that they will gather the long historical recognition of cannabis and its role in society and an understanding of its great promise in the future.
What are you hoping to learn or take away from this year’s conference? Are there any other talks you plan to attend?
Russo: My experience last year in Portland was excellent. I will be there throughout, hoping to learn and meet with old and new friends.