Clearing the Smoke: The Science of Cannabis

Clearing The Smoke: The Science Of Cannabis

First Aired Monday, February 28, 2011

Montana's Medical Marijuana law has been the subject of intense controversy and criticism

Montana Lawmakers are currently grappling with the state's controversial Medical Marijuana law. While some are arguing for tighter restrictions, others are pushing for a full repeal of the voter-passed initiative. Montana PBS's new documentary "Clearing the Smoke: The Science of Cannabis" addresses an important area missing in the rhetoric and controversy: the science behind Medical Marijuana.

The hour-long documentary reveals how the plant's chemical compounds act on the brain and the body to potentially treat a myriad of difficult conditions and diseases. Personal stories of relief from pain, nausea and epileptic seizures frame a scientific discussion of both the therapeutic potential and the very real side effects of cannabis as a medicine. The documentary details the government restrictions and financial difficulties of doing research on the plant, but it also highlights the legitimate work being done by scientists across the nation, including one South Carolina researcher who is uncovering its potential to treat auto-immune diseases and certain types of cancer. Interviews include Dr. Igor Grant, Director of the Center for Medicinal Cannabis Research and Dr. Eric Voth, longtime medical marijuana critic and Drug Policy Advisor to Presidents Reagan, Bush Senior, Clinton and Bush Junior.

Anna Rau/Tyson Bierwag

Clearing The Smoke: The Science Of Cannabis