Daily news - 21st May 2019

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UK news

MPs call for action over medicinal cannabis on NHS

Backbench debate highlights plight of families with severely ill children | i news, UK

Scrapping of drugs room plan for Bristol criticised

The scrapping of a trial of "safe rooms" where addicts could take drugs under medical supervision has been criticised by a campaigner | BBC, UK

Don't be complacent over laughing gas risks, say nurses

The gas - nitrous oxide - is the second most commonly used recreational drug in England and Wales after cannabis | BBC, UK

Victoria Derbyshire show - 20th May 2019 - Performance enhancing drugs

[Listen from 41 minutes in] The UK Anti-doping Agency want compulsory training to tackle performance drugs in gyms | BBC, UK

The harrowing stories of the tormented men saved from addictions at Hull rehab centre

We have been given special access inside The Bridges - the UK's only residential drug and alcohol treatment facility for ex-offenders | Hull Live, UK

School students hospitalised after inhaling 'dangerous' e-cigarette substance

Three children at Saddleworth School in Oldham, Greater Manchester had to be taken to hospital | Mirror, UK

19/60 HTA Tobacco Cessation, Control and Harm Reduction Interventions

Funding application dates: 16 May 2019 to 11 September 2019. Applications that span the remit of more than one of the participating programmes (EME, HS&DR, HTA, and PHR) are particularly welcomed | NIHR, UK

Police arrest 586 people in county lines crackdown

Nearly 600 suspected members of county lines drugs gangs have been arrested across the UK in the past week, the National Crime Agency has said | BBC, UK

Drug addict who killed stranger in Clydebank street is jailed

A drug addict who murdered a stranger who confronted him for hanging about in the street has been jailed for 17 years | BBC, UK


International news

‘No effect’ from targeting child drinking via the parents

Findings of this comprehensive review seem to almost entirely deflate what in the mid-2000s was a bubble of enthusiasm for parental programmes as a way to prevent or reduce drinking among teenagers - but despite this overall verdict, some interventions have had remarkable results | Drug and Alcohol Findings, UK

Artificial intelligence diagnoses lung cancer

The researchers at Northwestern University in Illinois and Google hope the technology could boost the effectiveness of cancer screening | BBC, UK

Cannabis composition alters effects of drug on the brain

Researchers have used functional magnetic resonance imaging to show how cannabidiol counteracts some of the harmful effects of cannabis on the brain | Pharmaceutical Journal, UK

Indonesian court sentences Frenchman to death for drug smuggling

An Indonesian court Monday sentenced Frenchman Felix Dorfin to death for drug smuggling, in a surprise verdict after prosecutors asked for a 20-year jail term | France24, France

Teens made up most of e-cigarette maker Juul's Twitter following - study

 Almost half of the people who followed Juul Labs Inc on Twitter last year were not old enough to legally purchase e-cigarettes in the United States, according to a study published on Monday | Reuters, UK

Why cannabis legalization must include cannabis equity

Canada's federal government is currently working to pass a bill that would provide pardons for people convicted of minor cannabis possession. With a federal election around the corner, it may be too little, too late | Medical Xpress, USA

CBD reduces craving and anxiety in people with heroin use disorder

Cannabidiol (CBD) reduced cue-induced craving and anxiety in individuals with a history of heroin abuse, suggesting a potential role for it in helping to break the cycle of addiction, according to research conducted at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai | Medical Xpress, USA

CBD Market Could Reach $20 Billion By 2024, Says New Study

Affecting industries as diverse as cosmetics, food and beverage and pharmaceuticals, the exploding CBD (cannabidiol) market has generated considerable headlines, providing fodder to umpteenth analysis and forecasts | Forbes, USA

Integrated stepped alcohol treatment for people in HIV care improves both HIV and alcohol outcomes

New clinical research supported by the National Institutes of Health shows that increasing the intensity of treatment for alcohol use disorder (AUD) over time improves alcohol-related outcomes among people with HIV | Medical Xpress, USA

The healing power of a smile: A link between oral care and substance abuse recovery

Your smile, and associated oral health, may be a factor for successfully passing through the revolving doors of life. It is your first impression to a stranger, the closing argument to land a job and a major factor to achieving a good quality of life. For those who struggle with substance use disorder, oral health often falls off the precipice of self-care | Medical Xpress, USA

What Psychedelics Reveal About the Nature of Consciousness

Dr. Peter Sjostedt-H is something of a rockstar “philosopher of mind.” His specializations include the English “process” philosopher Alfred North Whitehead, the German Übermensch philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche, and psychedelic drugs | Filter Magazine, USA

Scientists Might Have Just Found Where Cannabis Originally Came From

It's long been known that cannabis plants are indigenous to Central Asia, but a new study provides a fresh focus on where exactly this genus may have first evolved millions of years ago | Science Alert, Australia



Blogs, comment and opinion

Harry’s blog 87: A Bridge Over Troubled Waters

Last week, I was invited to speak at an informal seminar in Portugal under the banner ‘Portugal without smoke’ with a seminar title: Tobacco control and risk reduction: what are the options? The venue and attendees signalled, I thought, a very important step forward in acknowledging the link between tobacco and drug harm reduction | NSP blog, UK

The state of alcohol marketing evidence and policy in the UK

In this guest post, Nathan Critchlow, a researcher at the Institute for Social Marketing, discusses findings from recent research on alcohol marketing exposure and drinking amongst young people, and the UK policy context | IAS blog, UK

The Trip Report 20/05

Through the work of organisations such as WEDINOS, The Loop, and SaferParty, we know a little more about the drugs in circulation. The report provided below is a summary of their findings over the last week | Cameron Scally, UK

How stigma thwarts evidence-based and compassionate public policy

There may be no more dangerous contributor to the current opioid epidemic than stigma. Stigma is the lack of respect for a person or a group of people because they have done something or have traits of which society disapproves | BASIS blog, USA

It’s not all gym junkies and ‘roid rage’ – people use steroids for a variety of reasons

Most media reports would have you believe steroid users are predominantly young men suffering a “crisis of male ego” who are on a “deadly crusade to get ripped” | Conversation, Australia