Medical Marijuana for Cancer - Part 1

Photo Credit: Medical Marijuana Inc.

Photo Credit: Medical Marijuana Inc.

The term cancer refers to a group of more than 100 diseases in which abnormal cells grow out of control and normal body cells grow, divide, and die. This out of control cell growth is deemed cancer, and cancer cells will continue to grow rather than die, and can spread to other tissues and other parts of the body in what is called metastasis. Cancel cells often create tumors which can also invade normal tissue. The disease is considered genetic due to the fact it is caused by changes in the genes that control cell function. These changes can be inherited or they can come about throughout ones lifetime. Cancer is a serious illness that frequently results in death. Treatments vary, but they include tumor removal surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy, immunotherapy, hormone therapy, targeted therapy, and stem cell transplant.

Research suggests cannabis might inhibit the growth of cancer cells, and even potentially kill cancer cells. Both THC and CBD activate CB1 and CB2 receptors in the endocannabinoid system, and CB1 activation by THC has been show to reduce nausea and pain in cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy. Research has also found that CB1 and CB2 receptors, when activated, become antitumor agents in some aggressive cancers. In animal models, CBD inhibited the progression of breast, lung, prostate, and colon cancers, which suggests CBD may be able to effectively mediate cancer cell death in humans as well. CBD acid has also been shown to down-regulate invasive human brain cancer cells and prevent their growth.

Because there is so much information on how cannabis can specifically target certain cancer cells, we will continue this discussion in our next post. This information has been brought to you by Medical Marijuana Inc. and approved by our Chief Medical Officer.