Last updated on: 12/30/2008 | Author:

Gary Wenk, PhD Biography

Professor in the Department of Psychology at Ohio State University
Not Clearly Pro or Con to the question "Should Marijuana Be a Medical Option?"

“‘Could people smoke marijuana to prevent Alzeheimer’s disease if the disease is in their family?’ We’re [the research team] not saying that, but it might actually work. What we are saying is it appears that a safe, legal substance that mimics those important properties of marijuana can work on receptors in the brain to prevent memory impairments in aging…”

“Scientists Are High on Idea That Marijuana Reduces Memory Impairment,” Press Release, Ohio State University, Nov. 19, 2008

Involvement and Affiliations:
  • Professor, Department of Psychology
  • Professor, Department of Neuroscience and Molecular Virology, Immunology and Medical Genetics, Ohio State University Medical Center
  • Promotion and Tenure, Reading Committee, Department of Psychology, Ohio State University, 2008-present
  • Chartered Member, Aging Systems and Geriatrics Study Section, Center for Scientific Review, National Institutes of Health, 2008-present
  • Member, Exceptional, Unconventional Research Enabling Knowledge Acceleration (EUREKA), Special Review Board for NIA, NINDS, NIGMS, NIMH, NIDA, for the National Institutes of Health, 2008-present
  • Member, Ohio State University Center for Brain and Spinal Cord Repair
  • Recipient, Five Star Faculty Teaching Award, University of Arizona, May 1999
  • Recipient, Vernon & Virginia Furrow Excellence in Teaching Award, University of Arizona, Apr. 1995
  • Former Professor, Psychology and Neurology, University of Arizona
  • Former Research Scientist, Division of Neural Systems, Memory and Aging, University of Arizona
  • Former Program Director, Neurobiology of Learning and Memory and the Biological Basis of Behavior Program, Division of Behavioral and Neural Sciences, National Science Foundation
  • Former Faculty, Departments of Psychology and Pathology, Johns Hopkins University

  • Former Post-Doctoral Fellow, Laboratory of Drs. Peter Davies and Robert Terry, Albert Einstein College of Medicine
  • Education:
  • PhD, Neurotoxicology, University of Cincinnati
  • BA, with honors, Psychology and Biology, Albion College
  • Other:
  • Dr. Wenk has been interviewed about his work by many magazines and radio stations, including NPR, WBZ, WJR, CBS News, & WABC, numerous local and national television programs, including CNN, and by Lucasfilm, Ltd. and Amanada Productions for a 2-hr TV documentary on the topic of cognitive enhancers
  • Quoted in:
    1. Can Marijuana Help Treat Alzheimer's Disease?