Southern Nevada Section

                October 7, 2015 Meeting

 This was an interesting meeting on a subject clouded in myth.  People are doing research on marijuana, not in the USA, but elsewhere in the world.  There are some interesting medical applications.  But there are serious problems.  The active molecules are extremely hydrophobic.  That is why people inhale smoke from burning leaves instead of eating them.  Inhaling the smoke from any burning leaves is carcinogenic.  Another major problem is the adverse psychotropic effects.  Efforts to remove these by making analogues of the naturally occurring molecule have not been successful.  
American Chemical Society
Southern Nevada Section
October Meeting 
 Speaker:  Joe Vinson


Topic:  The Chemistry of Marijuana in Man


Event:  Local Section Meeting

Place:  UNLV Campus, Chemistry Building

4505 S. Maryland Parkway, Las Vegas, NV

Time:  Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Reception:  Room 224A, 6:30 - 7:00 PM

Talk:  Room 101, 7:00 PM


 Description: Marijuana is smoked, eaten, or drunk by more than 200 million people all over the world. Yet, it remains one of the least understood drugs. In this presentation, we will attempt to provide some insights into the chemistry of marijuana. As a background to begin our discussion, we will review the history of marijuana, which is thousands of years old. Next, we will look at the chemical composition of the cannabis plant, the pharmacology of marijuana in humans and the physiological effects of marijuana. A brief review of the analysis of marijuana in physiological fluids will then be presented. The recent advances in the use of marijuana in medicine will conclude the presentation.
 Biography:  Dr. Joe Vinson was born in Arkansas and grew up in the San Francisco Bay area. He attended college at the University of California at Berkley, where he received his B.S. in chemistry in 1963. He received a M.S. degree (in physical organic chemistry) at Iowa State University in 1966. He received a research assistantship at the Ames Lab of the Atomic Energy Commission at Iowa State and received a Ph.D. in organic and analytical chemistry in 1967 under the direction of Dr. James Fritz. After several teaching positions in Pennsylvania and a two-year stint in industry at J. T. Baker Chemical Company, he returned to academe and is now a professor of chemistry at the University of Scranton in Northeastern Pennsylvania. His research has been featured in Prevention, Psychology Today, Consumer Reports, AARP, Tufts Health & Nutrition Newsletter, US News & World Report and lampooned in a cartoon in Time magazine. He has appeared on TV-Good Morning America Sunday and radio-NPR All Things Considered and The Peoples' Pharmacy, as well as being mentioned by Jay Leno and Rush Limbaugh. Dr. Vinson is the author of over 70 publications. His research interests are wide-ranging and include drug analysis in physiological fluids and the effect of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants on nutrition and health.

Parking:  There is a parking fee for parking on campus before 7 PM.  For those unfamiliar with the campus the best bet for parking is the visitor lot on Maryland Parkway.