(720 ILCS 570/508) (from Ch. 56 1/2, par. 1508)
    Sec. 508. (a) The Department shall encourage research on controlled substances. In connection with the research, and in furtherance of the purposes of this Act, the Department may:
        (1) establish methods to assess accurately the effect
of controlled substances and identify and characterize those with potential for abuse;
        (2) make studies and undertake programs of research
            (i) develop new or improved approaches,
techniques, systems, equipment and devices to strengthen the enforcement of this Act;
            (ii) determine patterns of use, misuse, and abuse
of controlled substances and their social effects; and
            (iii) improve methods for preventing, predicting,
understanding, and dealing with the use, misuse and abuse of controlled substances; and
        (3) enter into contracts with public agencies,
educational institutions, and private organizations or individuals for the purpose of conducting research, demonstrations, or special projects which relate to the use, misuse and abuse of controlled substances.
    (b) Persons authorized to engage in research may be authorized by the Department to protect the privacy of individuals who are the subjects of such research by withholding from all persons not connected with the conduct of the research the names and other identifying characteristics of such individuals. Persons who are given this authorization shall not be compelled in any civil, criminal, administrative, legislative or other proceeding to identify the individuals who are the subjects of research for which the authorization was granted, except to the extent necessary to permit the Department to determine whether the research is being conducted in accordance with the authorization.
    (c) The Department may authorize the possession and dispensing of controlled substances by persons engaged in research, upon such terms and conditions as may be consistent with the public health and safety. The Department may also approve research and treatment programs involving the administration of Methadone. The use of Methadone, or any similar controlled substance by any person is prohibited in this State except as approved and authorized by the Department in accordance with its rules and regulations. To the extent of the applicable authorization, persons are exempt from prosecution in this State for possession, manufacture or delivery of controlled substances.
    (d) Practitioners registered under Federal law to conduct research with Schedule I substances may conduct research with Schedule I substances within this State upon furnishing evidence of that Federal registration and notification of the scope and purpose of such research to the Department.
(Source: P.A. 96-328, eff. 8-11-09.)