A marijuana investor has donated Harvard and MIT, his alma maters, $9 million to study the health effects of the drug.
This is the largest private funding of marijuana research according to the two institutions as reported in the Boston Globe.
“The lack of basic science research enables people to make claims in a vacuum that are either anecdotal or based on old science,” said the donor, Charles R. Broderick, speaking to the Globe.
He added, “For generations we haven’t been able to study this thing for various sorts of societal reasons. That should end now, as well as the prohibitions that are falling around the world.”
According to the Globe report, Broderick began investing in the cannabis industry in Canada in 2015.
Both institutions said that they will publicize their findings whether they conclude that marijuana helps or harms and that the donor’s financial interests in the cannabis industry will not influence their research.
Broderick said that when he suggested the study, “There was silence on the other end. Then she said: ‘I don’t think we can do it.’ And I said, ‘That’s the problem.’”