Talk about putting your money into something you believe in. Panacea Life Sciences founder and CEO Leslie Buttorff donated a whopping $1.5 million to Colorado State University to fund and support cannabinoid research.
This isn’t the first time alumni have donated funds for cannabis research, however. Oregon State University graduates Seth and Eric Crawford, founders of Oregon CBD, gave $1 million to their alma mater’s Global Hemp Innovation Center.
Colorado State University plans to use the funds Buttorff provided to create a CBD research center in the chemistry building. The money will also fund a terpene profile study, all in a push to study other cannabinoids, the likes of which are not fully known or understood. These cannabinoids include cannabigerol (CBG), cannabinol (CBN), cannabichromene (CBC), and tetrahydrocannabivarin (THCV).
Buttorff is a 1979 graduate of Colorado State University. In interviews, she anticipates that the partnership with her alma mater will work to promote and advance cannabinoid research. Her gift will effectively create opportunities for faculty and students interested in the subject. The realm of this area of research is mainly unknown. Buttorff’s contribution will be instrumental in the advancement of scientific research and the development of innovative, medically-focused products.
In a similar vein, professional athletes are donating to the cause. Last year, the medical cannabis company Primitive, co-owned by former Detroit Lions wide receiver Calvin Johnson, donated a six-figure sum to Harvard’s Phytomedicines and Medical Cannabis Institute. The gift will promote research on the effects of cannabis on pain management and chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE).
While still technically illegal federally, the feds have supported marijuana research. However, the focus was usually on ferreting out potential harmful effects. But that just might be changing. In September 2019, it was reported that the U.S. government planned to spend $3 million to study marijuana’s pain-relieving capabilities. While the focus will remain strictly on non-THC research, the National Institute of Health (NIH) will study minor cannabinoids and terpenes for pain-relieving purposes.