Cannabis kills Cancer Cells
“A group of federal researchers commissioned by the government to prove that cannabis has “no accepted medical use” may have unwittingly let information slip through the cracks, revealing how cannabis actually kills cancer cells.
The research, which was conducted by a team of scientists at St. George’s University of London, found that the two most common cannabinoids in marijuana, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD), weakened the ferocity of cancer cells and made them more susceptible to radiation treatment, said Mike Adams of Herbal Dispatch.
The study, which was published last year in the medical journal Molecular Cancer Therapies, details the “dramatic reductions” in fatal variations of brain cancer when these specific cannabinoids were used in conjunction with radiation therapy.
“We’ve shown that cannabinoids could play a role in treating one of the most aggressive cancers in adults,” wrote lead researcher Dr. Wai Liu, in a November 2014 op-ed for The Washington Post.“The results are promising… it could provide a way of breaking through glioma [tumors] and saving more lives.”
“Recent animal studies have shown that marijuana can kill certain cancer cells and reduce the size of others,” the NIDA report said. “Evidence from one animal study suggests that extracts from whole-plant marijuana can shrink one of the most serious types of brain tumours. Research in mice showed that these extracts, when used with radiation, increased the cancer-killing effects of the radiation.”
Source: Collective Evolution
Marijuana – Miracle Plant?
Marijuana is best known for its psychoactive properties. But how does marijuana bring about these sensations and how else does it behave in the body? To answer these questions, students might research how the active compounds in marijuana affect the body at the level of the cell, and draw parallels with how other drugs act in the body. As is the case with many other drugs — from legal, over-the-counter medications to illegal street drugs, like heroin — the active compounds interact with locations on the surfaces of cells called receptors.
Cell surface receptors provide a means for cells to receive information and input from the environment; when a molecule attaches, or binds, to a cell surface receptor, it triggers a series of events inside the cell, like the release of hormones, neurotransmitters or other molecules. A discussion about marijuana’s effects on the body might dovetail nicely with a broader class discussion or review of cell biology, the makeup and function of the cell membrane, and the function of neurotransmitters.
To dive a little deeper, explain that cells in the human body have receptors for the active compounds in marijuana, collectively referred to as cannabinoids. By binding to cannabinoid receptors, cannabinoid molecules affect how cells release chemical messengers called neurotransmitters. The human body naturally makes cannabinoids, and the main active ingredients in marijuana mimic these molecules and can therefore bind to the same receptors.
This might help to explain some of the effects marijuana is reported to have not just on the brain, but on other body systems as well. With this background in place, have students research some of the conditions and disorders marijuana is reported to help. What evidence do scientists use to support the idea that marijuana may help these and other conditions? What kind of additional evidence about the beneficial effects of marijuana do scientists need, and how do they suggest better using marijuana in ways that best help patients? Read rest of article.
What is Medical Marijuana?
Users of medical marijuana are hoping to achieve specific medical benefits from the use of marijuana, so it stands to reason that most medical marijuana users insist upon medical grade marijuana, whether they grow it at home or obtain it from a medical marijuana caregiver. While cannabis is a weed and easily grown in many climates, medical grade marijuana comes from only two strains: Cannabis sativa and Cannabis indica. These strains, unlike various other strains favored by some recreational users, produce marijuana potent enough to provide medical benefits.How Medical Grade Marijuana Is Grown?Just acquiring seeds from the correct marijuana strain won’t necessarily result in the production of medical grade marijuana. Expert medical marijuana caregivers and medical marijuana patients learn to grow medical grade marijuana by carefully controlling light, temperature, water, and more. It is not unusual for individuals growing medical grade marijuana to spend large sums of money on hydroponic systems for gardening, as well as special lights designed to promote the growth of plants.
Like any type of gardening, growing medical grade marijuana is an art and a science. There are over 60 cannabinoids found in the marijuana plant, with the most prevalent and well-understood being Tetrohydrocannabinol (THC), cannabidiol (CBD), and cannabinol (CBN). Different cannabinoids provide different benefits to patients. In addition, the interaction of these cannabinoids with one another may provide substantially more benefit than would one or two cannabinoids alone. While the sativa strain contains more THC, indica contains more CBD, meaning the two strains of medical grade marijuana each treat particular conditions better than they do others.
Which Strain of Medical Grade Marijuana Is Right for Me?
THC is the best-known and most studied cannabinoid, and appears to have analgesic and neuroprotective effects. Sativa, with its higher THC content, is much more potent in its psychoactive effects. THC is the cannabinoid responsible for the “high” experienced by marijuana users. Patients experiencing nausea, pain, depression, and migraine headaches may wish to choose the sativa strain of medical grade marijuana, in order to experience the benefits associated with high levels of THC.
CBD, by comparison, produces a more sedative and calming effect. CBD alone is not psychoactive, but it may help to moderate the effects of high levels of THC. Marijuana users who smoke marijuana with a high CBD/THC ratio have been found to experience schizophrenia-like symptoms less frequently. CBD’s effects are ideal for people with conditions that cause muscle spasms, spasticity, anxiety, nausea, pain, and inflammation. Medical marijuana patients with these conditions may wish to explore the use of the Indica strain of medical marijuana.
Every patient is different. If you’re not sure what strain of medical grade marjuana is right for you, work with your medical marijuana caregiver and medical marijuana doctor to experiment with the two available medical grade marijuana strains until you discover the strain and dosage that are most beneficial to you.
Depending upon your state’s medical marijuana laws, you should be able to either attempt to grow medical grade marijuana at home, or engage a medical marijuana caregiver to provide you with medical grade marijuana. Please research the relevant medical marijuana laws for your state, county, and city, and make sure you’ve done everything necessary to use medical marijuana legally before engaging in any transaction involving marijuana.”