Many leaders in the field of cannabis research are brilliant women who have discovered much of what we know about cannabinoids, have made groundbreaking achievements and scientific advancements, and have even contributed to how we use cannabinoids in our daily lives.
Today we want to introduce you to the 6 most inspirational women pioneers behind some of the most impactful cannabinoid research being done today, and to get more acquainted with the type of research that’s slowly but surely shifting the world as we know it.
Andrea Hohmann, PhD
Andrea Hohmann, PhD, is the chairwoman of the Gill Center for Biomolecular Science at Indiana University in Bloomington, and is one of the leading authorities on neuropathic pain and the ECS (Endocannabinoid System). In addition to having mapped out Endocannabinoid Receptors inside pain pathways, Hohmann is currently researching the possible benefits of using cannabinoids and opioids together as an alternative to abuse-liable and side effect-causing treatments.
Among many other groundbreaking conclusions, her lab has proven that nonopioid stress-induced analgesia is regulated through the release of cannabinoids. This opens the door to possibilities such as the use of cannabinoids and opioids together to treat patients more effectively and safely.
Cristina Sánchez, PhD
Cristina Sánchez, PhD, is a Spanish scientist who is a leader in the research of cannabinoids as non-toxic chemotherapeutic agents. Among her numerous achievements, she is one of the first scientists to record that cannabinoids have the ability to attack and destroy cancerous cells without harming healthy cells - a groundbreaking find in the scientific universe of cannabinoid investigation.
Sánchez’s most recent work, which focuses on THC and breast cancer, has contributed greatly to the collective body of research working towards the validation of the therapeutic traits of whole-plant cannabis extract and its potential applications in modern medicine.
Saoirse O’Sullivan, PhD
An expert in cannabinoid pharmacology, Saoirse O’Sullivan, PhD, specializes in the potential benefits of cannabis-based medicine. Her particular areas of expertise encompass CBD and other cannabinoid’s effects on gastrointestinal and cardiovascular health, driven by a passion for nature-based medicines.
She was formerly an Associate Professor at the University of Nottingham in the UK, where her research methodologies included cellular and animal models, as well as early clinical trials and volunteer studies.
O’Sullivan was named the International Cannabinoid Research Society Young Investigator of the Year in 2016; and in 2017 she started CanPharmConsulting, a company dedicated to investigating and developing cannabis-based medicines, and providing individuals with an alternative path to wellness through nature.
Linda Parker, PhD
Linda Parker, PhD, is an author and scientist, and the recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award from the International Cannabis Research Society. Her book “Cannabis and the Brain”, published in 2017, is one of the first works of its kind, and has since been highly praised by the global cannabis research community and neuroscience community alike.
Parker’s laboratory is currently investigating the neural activity that’s involved in the modulation of pharmacological properties of drugs meant to control nausea and vomiting in humans. This is a beautiful example of how Parker’s cannabinoid research reaches across traditional boundaries of pharmacology, psychology and neurobiology to unravel the processes of emotion, learning, sickness, and addiction.
Dr. Junella Chin & Aliza Sherman
When Dr. Junella Chin and Aliza Sherman co-wrote the book “Cannabis and CBD”, a guide for cannabis-based health and wellness, its message rippled across the globe. Though there have been a few similar works published, none captured modern-day interests and doubts regarding medical cannabis and cannabinoids as did “Cannabis and CBD”.
Through their positive experiences with cannabis, both Dr. Chin and Sherman gained the inspiration to advocate for higher education regarding the benefits and applications of cannabis and cannabinoids in the medical field, and its inclusion in modern pharmacological development.
Dr. Chin is an exceptionally accomplished doctor in New York City, and currently treats children and adults through the New York State Medical Cannabis Program. Her primary focus is in finding alternative and holistic perspectives on patient care, and advocating for cannabis inclusion in medical education. Dr. Chin has accepted various medical students’ requests to shadow her in her work, and hopes that through this, new medical students will follow in her footsteps in the revolutionary push for cannabis education.
Aliza Sherman is an outstanding women’s rights activist, international speaker, and author. Among her extensive accomplishments, she has won numerous awards and been part of many world-wide movements for women’s rights and inclusion in male-dominated fields. With her positive experience with cannabis, along with her unique perspective, Sherman is currently focusing on the women in cannabis movement.
The collective work these incredible women are doing is empowering people across the globe with knowledge, education, and direction. As the mysterious works of cannabinoids become unraveled, the world is shifting before our eyes; and it’s thanks to scientists such as these that humanity is advancing towards a collective goal: to know more about cannabinoids, and to develop ways to improve the quality of life of all fellow humans with them.