Record Number of Scientific Papers Published in 2020 About Cannabis

Washington, DC: In 2020, researchers worldwide published a record 3,500+ scientific papers on the subject of cannabis, according to data compiled by the National Library of Medicine and PubMed.gov.

Despite claims by some that marijuana has not yet been subjected to adequate scientific scrutiny, scientific interest in cannabis has increased exponentially in recent years. Since 2010, scientists have published over 23,000 peer-reviewed papers specific to cannabis, with the annual number of total papers increasing every year. By comparison, researchers published fewer than 3,000 total papers on cannabis in the years between 1990 and 1999 and fewer than 2,000 total studies during the 1980s.

A 2018 paper assessing trends in cannabis-related publications concluded that much of this uptick in scientific interest is a result of researchers’ newfound focus on marijuana’s therapeutic activities. Investigators reported that the total number of peer-reviewed publications dedicated to medical cannabis has increased nine-fold since the year 2000.

In all, PubMed.gov now cites over 35,000 scientific papers on marijuana.

Available to the public online since 1996, PubMed is a free resource supporting the search and retrieval of biomedical and life sciences literature.

For more information, see NORML’s reviews of hundreds of peer-reviewed papers assessing the safety and efficacy of cannabis in various patient populations.