From Academia/Medical Professions

Arnold, Associate Professor Jonathon
Associate Director of the Lambert Initiative of Cannabinoid Therapeutics which was established as a result of the largest philanthropic donation in the University’s history from  Barry and Joy Lambert whose grandaughter suffers with intractable epilepsy and responded well to cannabis. Made submission (with colleagues Professors Nick Lintzeris and Iain McGregor, ) to the Australian Government’s Public Inquiry into the Reuglator of Medicinal Cannabis Bill, supporting Bill and its aims.
Allsop, Dr David
Staff member at the Lambert Initiative for research into cannabinoid therapeutics at Sydney University. Gave evidence at the Federal Public Inquiry into Regulator of Medicinal Cannabis Bill.
Caldicott, Dr David
Emergency practitioner at Clavary Hospital, Canberra and Senior Lecturer/Associate Professor at Australian National University hospital campus.  Runs the Australian Medical Cannabis Observatory, working with charity/pressure group United in Compassion. The Observatory is a project run by healthcare providers, scientists, academics and other professionals exploring hard clinical, scientific and pharmacological aspects of the drug thus growing the body of learned work and enquiry around it. Currently (Nov 2016) running a survey among patients adhering to the ‘Open Science‘ ethic of encouraging free access to research and (suitably anonymised) data. Th Observatory also has links with the Australian Drug Observatory at the ANU.

Copeland, Professor Jan

Staff member, NDARC. Former head of National Cannabis Prevention and Information Centre and published widely on the drug’s ills. Team member Government-sponsored project ‘Cannabis and cannabinoids for medicinal purposes: Reviewing the evidence‘ discussed in this article

Degenhardt, Professor Louisa
Staff member, NDARC, specialist in drug-induced mental health problems and long-time collaborator of the Professor Wayne Hall. Head of Government-sponsored project ‘Cannabis and cannabinoids for medicinal purposes: Reviewing the evidence‘ discussed in this article.

Farrell, Professor Michael

Head, NDARC. A successor to Professor Wayne Hall. Co-writer (with Hall) of oft-cited BMJ article ‘Should Doctors Prescribe Cannabinoids?‘ (answer ‘no’) to which Sydney University’s Emeritus Professor of Anaesthetics Laurie Mather and others would later respond – a skirmish cited by the Federal Government when discussing a change in the law. Part of Government-sponsored project ‘Cannabis and cannabinoids for medicinal purposes: Reviewing the evidence‘ discussed in this article.

Gates, Dr Peter

Staff member, NDARC. Former staff member of National Cannaabis Prevention and Information Centre.Author (with Professor Jan Copeland) of paper ‘Psychosocial Interventions for Cannabis Use Disorder‘ and team member of of Government-sponsored project ‘Cannabis and cannabinoids for medicinal purposes: Reviewing the evidence‘ discussed in this article.

Hall, Professor Wayne
Inaugural Professor and Director of the Centre for Youth Substance Abuse Research at the University of Queensland, often cited (or writing for) international learned journals.  He was for some years head of NDARC – the Government’s main think-tank on drugs as well as being a member of the International Narcotics Control Board which implements, among others, the UN Single Convention on Drugs. Made submission to the Australian Government’s Public Inquiry into the Regulator of Medicinal Cannabis Bill, opposing the Bill and its aims.Known for the writing of many  important (generally anti-cannabis) reports, he was  an advisor to the World Health Organisation which recently published ‘The health and social effects of nonmedical cannabis use‘ which Professor Hall helped to edit. (See also ‘The adverse health effects of chronic cannabis use’ -below).He also chaired the NSW Government’s Working Party on Medicinal Cannabis which, in 2000 produced one of the most widely-cited Reports on the subject.For many years an important voice in the medical cannabis debate he caused a media flurry in 2014 after publishing a 20-year review of studies – ‘The adverse health effects of chronic cannabis use‘ – which, he says, showed the drug caused mental health problems, as explained in this Daily Mail article and criticised by some as being ‘deeply flawed‘.
Jiggens, Dr John
Writer, historian, academic and journlist, Dr Jiggens has written extensively about cannabis use in Australia. Author of the book ‘Marijuana Australia’ based on his his free-to download PhD Thesis of 2004 ‘Marijuana Australiana: Cannabis Use, Popular Culture, and the Americanisation of Drugs Policy‘, Dr Jiggens is also the writer further book about cannabis ‘Sir Joseph Banks and the Question of Hemp: Hemp, sea-power and empire, 1776-1815‘, available from his website which also houses an entertaining blog.
Lintzeris, Clinical Associate Professor Nick
Sydney University-based Addiction Medicine specialist leading the University’s Lambert Initiative of Cannabinoid Therapeutics.  Made submission (with colleagues Professors Jonathon Arnold and Iain McGregor, ) to the Australian Government’s Public Inquiry into the Regulator of Medicinal Cannabis Bill, supporting Bill and its aims. Spoke at United in Compassion’s 2014 Symposium, a video of which is here.
Mather, Emeritus Professor Laurence
Vical advocate of cannabis for medicinal use, Professor Mather describes himself as a ‘now-retired chemical and clinical pharmacologist with some four decades of academic research, mainly in the disciplines of anaesthesia and pain medicine’, and ‘author or co-author of a number of peer reviewed papers on cannabis, including one that is seemingly Australia’s first research paper on the chemical composition of cannabis.’ His co-written rebuttal in the British Medical Journal of a previous article by Professor Wayne Hall and others was cited by the Australian Parliament as a reason for legalising medicinal cannabis. Made submission and gace evidence to the Australian Government’s Public Inquiry into the Regulator of Medicinal Cannabis Bill, supporting Bill and its aims.
Mc Gregor, Professor Iain
Head of the Lambert Initiative for research into cannabinoid therapeutics at Sydney University. Gave evidence at the Federal Public Inquiry into Regulator of Medicinal Cannabis Bill.
O’Shaughnessy, Dr William Brooke
Physician and member of the Royal Society who worked for the East India Company and introduced the drug to Western medicine in 1841. A paper about him along with one of his own monographs ‘On the Preparations of the Indian Hemp or Gunjah’ are available for free download from the UIC website.
Penington, Emeritus Professor David
Influential thought-leader in field of dug use and mis-use, after whom progessive drug think-tank Penington Institute is named. Author of widely cited Australian Medical Journal article ‘Medical cannabis: time for clear thinking’ (February 2015).  Made submission to the Australian Government’s Public Inquiry into the Regulator of Medicinal Cannabis Bill, supporting Bill and its aims.
Phillips, Professor Jane
Professor of Nursing at University of Technology, Sydney specialising in oncology. Believes more evidence needed regarding medicinal cannabis.
Reece, Dr Stuart
Contraversial figure specialising in addiction. Runs medical centre in Brisbane and also Clinical Associate Professor at the Univesity of Western Australia. Opposes use / legalisation of medicinal cannabis and was recently quoted in press saying  medcal use of the drug is’driven by media hype, not by the science. People are buying into an illusion and the illusion will shatter in time.’ Also in press after 25 deaths occurred as a result of treatment by Dr Reece with Naltrexone. An activist and member of Drug Free Australia, for which he has met criticsim.
Ritter, Professor Alison
Noted drug policy researcher and Director of the Drug Policy Modelling Program (DPMP) at the National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre (NDARC) at the University of New South Wales. Gave evidence to the Australian Government’s Public Inquiry into the Regulator of Medicinal Cannabis Bill in 2015, saying there was a huge problem in discussing medical use of the drug because of the ‘baggage’ it carried as an illicit substance.

Scheffer, Dr Ingrid

Prominent childhood epilipsy specialist and Professor at the University of Melbourne and Florey Institute of Neuroscience and Mental Health.   A conversation between Dr Scheffer and medical cannabis campainger David Stevens relating to Dr Scheffer’s treatment of his duaghter Deisha with steroids is on YouTube. Dr Scheffer was subsequently appointed to lead Australia’s first trial of synthetic cannabis for children with refractory epilepsies in Victoria.
Sinclair, Justin
Pharmacognosist, botanist, neuropath and writer/researcher. Advisor to charity / pressure group United in Compassion. Spoke at UIC’s 2016 Symposium. Runs TM (Traditional Medicine) Consultancy.

Wodak, Dr Alex

Physician and director of the Alcohol and Drug Service at Sydney’s St Vincent’s Hospital. Dr Wodak has been vocal in supporting medical cannabis use, giving evidence to the Australian Government’s Public Inquiry into the Regulator of Medicinal Cannabis Bill, supporting Bill and its aims. Dr Wodak is also President of the Australian Drug Law Reform Foundation, and has authored many articles and papers on the subject of medical cannabis as well as sitting on the medical advisory board of the cannabis grower AusCann and is a patron of United in Compassion, the charity and pressure group.