Marijuana Killing Cancer Cells

The Role of Marijuana in Combating the Growth of and Killing Cancer Cells

A new study has shown the potential for cannabis compounds to inhibit the growth of cancerous cells, giving renewed credence to the campaign to legalize the drug.

The research was done at India’s Amity University with a team of employees and it involved the effects of cannabinoids on various kinds of cancers, as well as marijuana’s appetite stimulation, anti-nausea, and relieving properties.

It was established that aside from treating symptoms arising after chemotherapy sessions, cannabis has the potential to slow the growth of and even kill the cancer cells in some cases.

Further preclinical studies have also revealed that cannabinoids can lead to the death of breast cancer cells, potentially kill or damage liver cancer cells, decrease the risk of colon cancer, as well as increase the effectiveness of chemotherapy against glioma cell cancer; a condition that affects the nervous system or brain.

The cannabinoids nabilone and dronabinol have been approved by the Food and Drug Administration for managing the side effects of chemotherapy, although there are currently no cannabinoids that have officially been approved in the treatment of cancer itself.

According to the research, cannabinoids seem to exert anti-growth activity while activating different kinds of apoptotic mechanisms that eventually lead to the death of cancer cells linked to glioma, a chronic form of brain cancer.

Apoptosis is a natural body process that involves cells getting destroyed as part of a certain organism’s growth. The thing about cancer cells is that they grow as an abnormal body process since they no longer concede to the body’s signal to either encourage or destroy cell growth.

With the continued growth and division of the cancer cells, it becomes less and less possible for the body to control them given that they no longer acknowledge apoptosis. This also means that cell proliferation is expedited and signals from other normal cells are also ignored.

This is what makes the endocannabinoid system extremely crucial for the body; it helps to modulate the growth and death of cells. As the cancer cells continue to reproduce beyond the endocannabinoid system’s ability to handle, they invade the body through normal tissues, spreading all over in a process that is known as metastasis.

The endocannabinoid system features two primary receptors. The CB1 receptors are mostly found in the brain whereas the CB2 receptors are primarily located in the immune system.

THC is the active component in cannabis that binds to CB1 receptors. It is usually responsible for behavior, mood, and other cerebral functions. Meanwhile, CBD is the other active component of marijuana that latches onto CB2 receptors and alerts the receptors to any dangerous “invaders” in the body that need destroying.

The apoptotic process is achieved through the de novo synthesis of sphingolipid and ceramide that promote cell destruction. Once the CBD binds with the CB2 receptors, the resulting receptor activation can assist the endocannabinoid system to signal an antitumorigenic warning.

As a result, the development of cancer is impaired through inhibiting metastasis, reproduction, and tumor angiogenesis.

Even though it will take more conclusive studies for marijuana to be declared an official drug in the treatment of cancer, the cannabinoids found in cannabis oil have, without a doubt, been of significant help to cancer patients in various ways.

People are already using the cannabis oil for alleviating the side effects of chemotherapy such as fatigue, vomiting, nausea, neuropathic pain, appetite loss, immune suppression, etc.