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UMass Professor Ends Fight To Grow Medical Marijuana

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(File image credit: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

(File image credit: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

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WASHINGTON (AP) — A University of Massachusetts-Amherst professor says he’s dropping his nearly decade-long fight to persuade the government to let him grow marijuana in bulk for medical research.

Horticulturist Lyle Craker wanted to cultivate marijuana to boost research into the plant’s potential medicinal benefits.

But he’s been rebuffed — even as more than a dozen states have legalized medical marijuana.

Craker says he saw no end in sight to the legal wrangling, given the likelihood of an appeals process that could run several years, or even decades.

He was frustrated, too, that he never got a hoped-for boost from the Obama administration.

Craker, who said he has never smoked marijuana, launched his challenge to the government’s monopoly on growing and distributing research marijuana in 2001.

A lab at the University of Mississippi is the government’s only marijuana-growing facility.

Craker contends that the government-grown pot lacks the potency medical researchers need for breakthroughs.(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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