In the fifth part in the series ‘Myths of Cancer’ issues by the SIO Research Committee, misconceptions and myths regarding cancer and its treatment are busted. The blog mainly focuses on revealing the truth of the myth, which states cannabis as an effective cure for cancer.
“Cannabis is an incredible medicine for treating side-effects of cancer treatment such as vomiting, nausea, loss of appetite, depression, pain, insomnia, and anxiety. However, it cannot be assumed as a cure for cancer”, states Dr. Abrams. Cannabis is not the cure for cancer but cell lines and animal models suggest that cannabis might show anti-cancer effect in the body of humans. The Cannabinoids are chemical substances interacting with the cannabinoid receptors present in humans. The cancer cells can express the cannabinoid receptors in humans. The cannabinoid interacts with the cannabinoid receptors and thus, prevent the cancer cells from expressing themselves. The THC cannabinoid is associated with appetite-stimulating and psychoactive effects but some doubts still prevail. Research has been carried out on another cannabinoid, Cannabidiol and the outcome of the research tells that.
Cannabidiol also referred to as CBD, has anti-cancer effects. Several cannabinoid-based (explaining that they are not naturally derived, but are man-made or synthetic) drugs and RSO oil cancer have been approved by the FDA. Nabilone (THC-similar, Cesamet) and Dronabinol (Syndros, delta-9-THC, and Marinol) are some examples. Naturally-Derived cannabidiol, Epidiolex was approved by the FDA on 25 June 2018 for two severe and rare forms of Epilepsy. It became the first naturally-derived cannabinoid to be approved in the US. Meanwhile, the Health Canada approved the first non-synthetic cannabis product of North America- Nabiximols (Sativex) which was primarily used to treat muscle spasticity in 2010 and neuropathic pain in 2005 from numerous sclerosis. The formulated extract of C. Sativa, Nabiximols possess a 1:1 ratio of THC and CBD and that of other non-cannabinoid and cannabinoid components.
In animal models and cell cultures, cannabinoids derived from cannabis, especially the cannabidiol and THC show activity, which is not in the favor of cancers (meanwhile accelerates the count of others paradoxically). None of the researches or study can offer evidence in support of cannabis as a cure for cancer. Several drugs prove themselves effective in animal models and cell cultures but they fail in proving themselves effective in definitive clinic trials.
One among the two early phase clinic trails states that cannabinoids might help in treating a severe kind of brain cancer. However, some possible side effects might prevail. However, it would be harmful and irresponsible if one states that cannabis will help treat all kinds of cancer.
Studies depict that use of medicine might result in a delay in the conventional treatment which worsens the cancer-specific results. Meanwhile, considering the proven advantages of RSO oil cancer in treating side effects such as neuropathic pain, nausea, and loss of appetite, we can use RSO oil cancer in the form of an integrative treatment of indications of cancer but not in the form of a complete conventional treatment.