By Adam Andrzejewski for RealClearPolicy
Oregon Health and Science University received $14 million from the National Institutes of Health to provide marijuana edibles to monkeys and to observe their effects.
A White Coat Waste Project investigation found that the experiment included two parts. First, eight female macaques were given a THC — the main psychoactive ingredient in marijuana — edible daily for up to four months and were observed for any changes to their menstrual cycle. Six male macaques received the THC daily for up 7 months. They were then observed to see if there were any changes in their fertility.
Only the White Coat Waste Project could find out the huge cost of the project when it filed a complaint to the NIH. The Stevens Amendment, a federal law, requires laboratories to disclose what percentage of experiment costs came from taxpayer money and how much was spent by taxpayers.
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The Oregon Health and Science University disclosed none of these figures in its reports announcing the research results.
This experiment was not only illegal under federal law because it did not report the expenditure, but also very inefficient. Researchers could also have done experiments on humans if they wanted to examine the effect of cannabis on fertility and menstrual cycle. Oregon legalizes recreational marijuana. This would mean that many people could have participated in the studies.
Transparency is important for taxpayers. It is not acceptable to hide the cost of costly research projects.
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