Dr Ostrow comes to the field of Cannabinoid therapeutics research and product development from his training in lipid biochemistry, psychopharmacology, and behavioral/prevention aspects of HIV/AIDS. In terms of HIV/AIDS, started the Chicago AIDS Task Force (1982) and helped organize the first and still ongoing natural history study of HIV infection (the MACS). There he focused on the role of recreational drugs in HIV transmission and disease progression. That research established that Cannabis was the only category of widely used drugs that did not facilitate HIV transmission or accelerate immunodeficiency development, and was reported to lessen symptoms among his HIV patients.
In 2008 he began advocacy work to get major national medical societies to support research on medicinal aspects of cannabis, and to end the NIDA monopoly on legal cannabis production that basically prevents controlled therapeutic trials in the US. He is a founding Board Member of the Am Academy of Cannabinoid Medicine and the IL Spokesperson for Doctors for Cannabis Regulation. His consulting work has focused on the development of innovative methods to develop whole plant derived therapeutics, and since mid 2018, he has been the Scientific Director of the Coral Cove Wellness Center (CCWC) that will, beginning in Spring 2019, house an integrated program of residential therapy for persons with chronic pain and opioid dependence, research to develop cannabinoid therapeutics, and professional education in the integration of cannabinoid medicine into treatment and prevention practice. The CCWC is being developed in partnership with Cannim PLC of Sydney, Australia and the Coral Cove CannaResort located in Little Bay, Jamaica in the Health & Wellness Zone of Jamaica’s West Coast.