The Endocannabinioid System: A Look Back and Ahead


Raphael Mechoulam, Ph.D., who is considered “the father of cannabidiol research,” will present the inaugural Mechoulam Lecture to commemorate the groundbreaking discoveries that have paved the way for contemporary cannabis research.

Ironically, Dr. Mechoulam has never consumed cannabis at all. Not even once. Instead, Dr. Mechoulam approaches his research with a scientist’s curiosity rather than a desire to simply advance or detract from cannabis culture.

Despite Mechoulam’s distinction in small sectors of the science community, his name is seldom attached to mainstream discussion of the endocannabinoid system, THC and CBD.

Mechoulam has received numerous awards for his work, but has failed to reach a mass audience until recently. Mechoulam received his master’s degree in biochemistry from the Hebrew University, before completing his Ph.D. at the Weizmann Institute. In 2000, Mechoulam received the distinct honor of the Israel Prize.

He has been awarded multiple lifetime achievement awards and received the Rothschild Prize in 2012 for his discoveries on the influences of natural chemical substances on human behavior.

Dr. Mechoulam is currently 86 and teaches at Hebrew University in Jerusalem. His research has been cited over 40,000 times and is considered to be the standard on which further scientific development will be based. As Mechoulam himself professed “I found the independence of research to be an addiction from which I do not want to be cured.”

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