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The Utah House overwhelmingly approved a proposal Tuesday that would allow universities to study medical marijuana.

SALT LAKE CITY — The Utah House overwhelmingly approved a proposal Tuesday that would allow universities to study medical marijuana.

Lawmakers said research showing benefits of cannabis extracts on people may lead the state in the future to allow careful, controlled use of the drug by those with debilitating conditions.

HB130, sponsored by Rep. Brad Daw, R-Orem, has been endorsed by the Utah Medical Association, which says more study needs to be done on the drug before the state approves its broader use as a medicine.

The bill advances to the Senate for consideration.

More than two dozen states have passed comprehensive medical marijuana programs. Utah lawmakers were expected to take up the issue this year but decided they're not ready to pass a broad medical marijuana law allowing the drug to be used as treatment.

— Associated Press