Cannabis Science, Inc. (OTCBB:CBIS), a pioneering US biotech company developing pharmaceutical cannabis products, is pleased to report a government released update on cancer treatments using medical cannabis (marijuana) http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/pdq/cam/cannabis/healthprofessional and cancer.gov, updated March 17, 2011, summarizing how the treatment of cancer with cannabinoids goes beyond the simple treatment of symptoms and side effects by exhibiting possible direct antitumor activities.
This summary contains the following key information:
- Cannabis has been used for medicinal purposes for thousands of years prior to its current status as an illegal substance.
- Chemical components of Cannabis, called cannabinoids, activate specific receptors found throughout the body to produce pharmacologic effects, particularly in the central nervous system and the immune system.
- Cannabinoids may have benefits in the treatment of cancer-related side effects.
- The potential benefits of medicinal Cannabis for people living with cancer include antiemetic effects, appetite stimulation, pain relief, and improved sleep.
- Though no relevant surveys of practice patterns exist, it appears that physicians caring for cancer patients who prescribe medicinal Cannabis predominantly do so for symptom management.
- Unlike other commonly used drugs, cannabinoids are stored in adipose tissue and excreted at a low rate (half-life 1–3 days).
- Even abrupt cessation of cannabinoid intake is not associated with rapid declines in plasma concentrations that would precipitate severe or abrupt withdrawal symptoms or drug cravings.
Robert Melamede, Ph.D., Cannabis Science’s CEO stated, “As we’ve previously reported, one of the most interesting findings that has emerged since the discovery of the endocannabinoid system (marijuana like compounds produced by humans, and all vertebrates) is that cannabinoids have profound cancer-killing and anti-metastatic properties. There is strong scientific support, demonstrated in tissue culture and animal studies, of the potent cancer killing properties of cannabinoids for such deadly cancers as glioma, lung cancer, breast and prostate cancer, leukemias and lymphomas, and as well as skin cancers.
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