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Vaporizing Cannabis: Trends and Implications for Health and Abuse Liability

December 12, 2014

Dustin Lee, PhD, MS
Instructor, Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Johns Hopkins Medicine

Benjamin Crosier, PhD
Instructor, Biomedical Data Science, Dartmouth College

Alan Budney, PhD
Professor, Psychiatry, Dartmouth College

About the Presentation: Evolving cannabis laws and increases in production of high potency cannabis products have increased marketing and use of vaporizers as an alternative method of administration to conventional smoking. Similar to electronic cigarettes, cannabis vaporizers provide an alternative method of administration that may eliminate some of the deleterious side effects associated with conventional smoking which may be appealing to a larger portion of the population. However, risks and patterns of use associated with vaporizing cannabis are not well understood at this time. In this talk, we will present an overview of vaporizing cannabis as it relates to the changing landscape of cannabis use. We will also present results from a survey study distributed on Facebook which assessed the prevalence, frequency, and patterns of vaporizer use among cannabis users.

About the Presenters: Dustin Lee is an Instructor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine.

Benjamin Crosier is an Instructor in the Department of Biomedical Data Sciences at Dartmouth College.

Alan Budney is a Professor at the Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth. He received his PhD in Clinical Psychology from Rutgers University in 1989. He was a postdoctoral fellow and faculty member at the University of Vermont from 1990 to 2005, and then was a Professor at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences until he moved to Dartmouth in 2012. Over the last 20 years he has conducted extensive research on the development and evaluation of innovative behavioral treatments for substance abuse, specializing in cannabis use disorders in adults and adolescents. His clinical research has focused on integrating abstinence-based contingency management interventions with more traditional therapies, and using computer-assisted therapies to enhance the cost effectiveness of these approaches. He has also conducted a series of human laboratory and survey studies characterizing the cannabis withdrawal syndrome. Dr. Budney is a Fellow and Past-President of the Division 28 (Psychopharmacology and Substance Abuse) of the American Psychological Association, and is President-Elect of Division 50 (Addictions).  He was a member of the substance use disorders working group for the development of the DSM-5, and currently serves on the Board of Directors for the College on Problems of Drug Dependence. He has served on numerous grant review committees at the NIH, was on the scientific review board of the Center for Medical Cannabis Research at the University of California San Diego, and participated regularly with the Office of National Drug Control Policy on their Marijuana and Kids Media Campaign. Dr. Budney has been an active member of many community task forces targeting reduction in delinquency, violence, and substance abuse.  Much of his research is conducted in collaboration with his wife and colleague, Dr. Catherine Stanger.