Raphael Mechoulam, ‘Father of Cannabis Research,’ Dies at 92

2 min readPublished On: March 13th, 2023By

JERUSALEM- Raphael Mechoulam, widely regarded as the father of cannabis research, passed away on September 27th, 2021, at the age of 92. Born in Bulgaria in 1930, Mechoulam was a brilliant Israeli chemist who dedicated his life to unlocking the secrets of the cannabis plant.

Mechoulam first became interested in cannabis in the 1960s, during his postdoctoral studies at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel. At the time, very little was known about the plant’s chemical composition or its potential therapeutic uses. Mechoulam was determined to change that.

In 1964, Mechoulam made a groundbreaking discovery when he isolated and identified delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the primary psychoactive compound in cannabis. This discovery paved the way for further research into the effects of THC on the body and brain.

Mechoulam’s work did not stop with the discovery of THC. He went on to identify many other compounds in cannabis, including cannabidiol (CBD), another non-psychoactive compound that has shown great promise as a therapeutic agent.

Mechoulam was also instrumental in the discovery of the endocannabinoid system (ECS), a complex network of receptors and neurotransmitters that play a critical role in regulating various bodily functions, including mood, appetite, pain, and inflammation.

In addition to his scientific contributions, Mechoulam was a vocal advocate for the legalization of cannabis for medical purposes. He believed that the plant held great potential for treating a wide range of conditions, from chronic pain to cancer.

Throughout his long and illustrious career, Mechoulam received numerous accolades for his pioneering work in cannabis research. He was awarded the Israel Prize in 2000, the highest honor that can be bestowed upon an individual by the Israeli government, and the Rothschild Prize in 2012.

In a statement released after his death, the Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett paid tribute to Mechoulam, saying: “Professor Mechoulam was a pioneering researcher and a leading scientist who left an indelible mark on the field of cannabis research. His groundbreaking discoveries have helped to unlock the potential of this plant as a source of healing and relief for countless individuals around the world. His legacy will live on for generations to come.”

Mechoulam’s contributions to the field of cannabis research have had a profound impact on the way we understand the plant and its potential uses. His tireless work and dedication to science will continue to inspire future generations of researchers and advocates for years to come.

About the Author: News Team

Newsteam at Highly Capitalized are some of the most experienced writers in cannabis and psychedelics business & finance. We cover capital markets, finance, branding, marketing and everything important in between. Most of all, we follow the money.

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