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Immune System Early Warnings Inspire New Remedies

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Sept. 20, 2022 – The immune system is among the most complex and mysterious in the human body, and it is more versatile than previously understood, report researchers in the emerging field of mechanoimmunology, tracking how our bodies fight illness and how to successfully intervene.

Unlike other systems that rely on organs to operate, the immune system uses millions of different specialized cells to patrol every corner of the body for invaders and dispatch them as needed. It also relies heavily on the microbiome, the bustling communities of bacteria that carry out many of our essential functions even though they aren’t actually our own body cells.

Scientists are learning more and more every day about how the immune system works, and now, researchers at the Buck Institute for Research on Aging in Novato, CA, have begun discovering how physical – rather than just chemical – forces in the cellular environment also play a vital role in immune functions.

Mechanical activity has already been seen as playing a role in other body systems, particularly the cardiovascular and skeletal systems. Buildup in arteries of the heart can lessen blood flow, too much pressure on bone can prompt stress fractures, and pressure on tissue can cause scarring.

The idea that physical properties, rather than just chemical reactions, have a significant impact on immune function is a new idea that’s only just beginning to get attention. Dan Winer, MD, an associate professor at the Buck Institute, discovered in his study of obesity that increases in fat tissue activate fibrosis – thickened scar tissue – which then triggers surrounding cells to go on alert for potential threats to the body and respond to chronic disease.

Now, his lab is expanding its focus on mechanoimmunology to discover how physical forces impact autoimmunity, the increase or decrease of inflammation and healing forces after tissue injury.

Expanding scientists’ understanding of those forces will open the door to new therapies for treating disease – approaches that rely on changing the physical microenvironment of tissue rather than delivering drugs to induce chemical reactions. For example, cirrhosis, a scarring of the liver, involves tissue far stiffer than surrounding healthy liver tissue. If researchers can develop a treatment that reduces that stiffness, nearby immune cells may crank down their inflammatory response in the liver, which could have a positive impact on fatty liver disease. Other applications of this concept might address how therapeutics respond to infections or help speed up healing

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Source Here: webmd.com

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Congress Under Pressure: Colorado Officials Push for Cannabis Banking Reform

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With the end of Congress’ session just around the corner, marijuana advocates, stakeholders and lawmakers continue to push for marijuana banking policy change.

This time, Colorado Gov. Jared Polis (D) joined forces with Lt. Gov. Dianne Primavera (D), Attorney General Phil Weiser (D), Treasurer Dave Young (D) and Department of Public Safety (DPS) Executive Director Stan Hilkey in urging congressional leaders to revisit the issue, reported Marijuana Moment.

In a letter sent on Monday to both House and Senate leaders, Colorado officials focused on the impact which a bipartisan marijuana banking bill will have in terms of public safety and industry equity,

“The lack of safe banking and financial services for the cannabis industry in the State of Colorado has become a dire public safety issue for highly regulated cannabis businesses operating in compliance with state …

Full story available on Benzinga.com

Original Post: benzinga.com

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New Data Shows Weed Legalization a Boon for Real Estate, New Jobs and Tax Revenue

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A new report from the Federal Reserve Bank shed light on the economic impact marijuana legalization has had in recent years, reported Marijuana Moment. Policy changes on the state level have resulted in increased commercial real estate demand, as well as a surge in tax revenues while creating more jobs.

According to an analysis from the Kansas City arm of the Central Bank, which collected data from several states under its jurisdiction, the Tenth Federal Reserve District, the cannabis industry has become one of the main economic sectors positioned to grow substantially in the coming period.

“Overall, the marijuana industry has had a significant effect on the economies of Tenth District states in the initial years after legalization,” the report said. “The emergence of the industry has …

Full story available on Benzinga.com

Article: benzinga.com

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Will Missouri Legalize Cannabis? Amendment 3 Suffers Another Attack This Time by State NAACP

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Cannabis legalization efforts in Missouri are under attack once again, this time by The Missouri State Conference of the NAACP.

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The Missouri NAACP, breaking with chapters in the St. Louis area is urging its members to vote against Amendment 3 on the Nov. 8 ballot, reported the Saint Louis Post-Dispatch.

The group announced Thursday that it believes recreational marijuana legalization, as it is proposed under Amendment 3, would prevent minorities from entering the cannabis industry. 

“Marijuana possession should not be a constitutional crime. Additionally, for years now, Black people, other minorities, and people who have been criminalized by marijuana laws in the past have been unable to enter the medical marijuana market,” the Missouri NAACP wrote. “That is not right. In an effort to prevent the permanent exclusion of minorities from the cannabis industry in the state of Missouri, the NAACP calls upon every voter to reject the criminalization of marijuana possession, de facto racist regulation of the cannabis market, and the wool being pulled over our eyes by the supporters of Amendment 3.”

Under Amendment 3, the first “comprehensive” cannabis business licenses would be provided to existing medical marijuana companies. 

The state’s chapter highlighted that the amendment “does not increase the number of available full market licenses” and claims that giving “micro” business licenses to disadvantaged groups makes a “very limited” program. 

According to Nimrod “Rod” Chapel Jr., president of the Missouri NAACP, members agreed last week …

Full story available on Benzinga.com

Source: benzinga.com

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