Minnesota has hired the top official to oversee research on the effects of marijuana for the state's new medical marijuana program.
Dr. Thomas Arneson, an internal medicine specialist with research experience in several organizations, will head up research efforts in the state's Office of Medical Cannabis. His hire was announced Thursday. He starts Monday.
The state will gather data from every patient on different chemical compounds, dosages and side effects to build a database of what works -- and what doesn't. Lawmakers included the research provision in the law legalizing pills, oils and vapors for a handful of conditions.
The state is in the process of selecting its two medical marijuana manufacturers. Patients are expected to be able to get the medicine starting July 2015.