TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) - In a story July 18 about a marijuana researcher who was fired from the University of Arizona, The Associated Press reported erroneously that the university is looking for a new researcher who can raise more money. The study is already funded.
A corrected version of the story is below:
Professor aims to resume research on pot and PTSD
Firing of Arizona professor highlights difficulty of US research into medical marijuana
By ASTRID GALVAN
TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) - Veterans, medical marijuana activists and scientists welcomed the first federally approved research into pot as a treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder.
But their hopes for the research were dashed when the University of Arizona fired researcher Suzanne Sisley, who undertook the study after clearing four years of bureaucratic hurdles.
Sisley, a medical doctor who also taught and researched at the university, sought the project after years of treating military vets who told her that marijuana was the only drug that helped them improve symptoms of the disorder that affects up to 20 percent of those who served in the Afghanistan and Iraq wars.
The university said it let Sisley go on June 27. In a letter to Sisley, released Friday to The Associated Press, the university says she was fired because funding for part of the work she did with the medical school was running out and because the telemedicine program she worked with is shifting direction.
Chris Sigurdson, a spokesman for the university, said the school is committed to continuing the project and is looking to replace Sisley with another researcher.
Sisley says she lost the job because state legislators who opposed her work had put pressure on the university - a claim the school denies.
Her study would have measured the effects of five different potencies of smoked or vaporized marijuana in treating symptoms of PTSD in 50 veterans.
“Basically ours would have been the first and only controlled study looking at marijuana effects on PTSD. There are very few randomized control studies,” Sisley said.
Sisley says the battle is not over. She is asking the university to reinstate her. If she fails, she intends to try to get another university to take on the project.