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Harvard Professor To NFL: Treat Concussions With Pot

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Harvard Medical School member says cannabis could be used to prevent long-term trauma from repeated concussions. (Getty Images)

Harvard Medical School member says cannabis could be used to prevent long-term trauma from repeated concussions. (Getty Images)

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CAMBRIDGE, Mass. (CBSDC) — A well regarded Harvard professor emeritus has a modest suggestion for the NFL: start funding marijuana research as a way to treat concussions.

Lester Grinspoon has long been an advocate of marijuana. He shared with Vice’s online magazine Motherboard an open letter he’s written to NFL commissioner Roger Godell urging him to listen to evidence of cannabis as a successful treatment for long term head trauma.

Grinspoon says he is a long-time fan of the NFL and does not want to see players suffer brain traumas in the future.

He says while helmets can protect the skull, nothing can protect the brain inside…except maybe cannabis.

“Already, many doctors and researchers believe that marijuana has incredibly powerful neuroprotective properties, an understanding based on both laboratory and clinical data,” he writes.

Grinspoon the NFL is one of the few organizations with the deep pockets to fund the extensive research needed.

He says the money will be worth it to prevent a lifetime of brain disease for future players.

The NFL has acknowledged repeated concussions can contribute to Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy and has mandated stricter rules designed to protect against repetitive brain injuries.

(TM and © Copyright 2014 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2014 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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