THC, found in cannabis, shown to be effective in the treatment of brain tumors

Tuesday, October 25, 2011 by: Michelle Bosmier
Tags: THC, brain tumors, health news

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(NaturalNews) Over the last decade, a multitude of studies have been conducted, aimed at testing the effect of cannabis compounds on several types of health conditions, including cancer, multiple sclerosis, heart disease, nausea, and many more.

In 2000, scientists at the Complutense University of Madrid carried out an extensive experiment, testing the effects of THC on cancerous brain cells in laboratory rats. Their discoveries were nothing short of amazing, as THC had effectively managed to destroy all cancer cells, while leaving healthy cells unaffected. Research into the effects of THC on glioblastoma would have had the potential to revolutionize available cancer treatments, yet due to insufficient funding and poor public exposure, the science team was unable to further their research.

At the time, lead researcher Manuel Guzman explained that "cannabinoids are selective antitumor compounds, as they can kill tumor cells without affecting their non-transformed counterparts." In contrast to this, chemotherapy, the prevalent anticancer treatment of today, consists of a combination of antineoplastic drugs that have devastating physical and psychological side-effects, which may include:

- depression of the immune system, which can expose the body to fatal infections
- chronic fatigue and anemia
- gastrointestinal distress
- hair loss
- infertility
- cognitive impairment
- teratogenicity (which means chemotherapy carries the risk of inducing genetic mutations that lead to malformations in fetuses, if the mother undergoes chemotherapy)

Dr. Guzman goes on to explain that THC has the exact opposite effect on the body, actively nurturing and even protecting healthy bodily cells from premature cell death. For the 2000 study, Guzman and his science team injected glioma cancer cells into the brains of 45 rats, to induce brain tumors. The rats were then divided into 3 groups: 15 rats were subjected to THC infusions for seven days; 15 were subjected to a synthetic cannabinoid infusion; and the remaining 15 were left untreated.

The rats that had received no treatment died in under 3 weeks. The tumors in 3 of the rats from the THC group vanished completely, while the other rats in this group showed significant improvement, living a lot longer than the rats that had received no treatment. The cannabinoid group had also shown major signs of improvement. Guzman explained that gliomas are among the most aggressive tumors that currently affect human beings, and because of their attachment to the brain or spine, they are extremely dangerous to operate on and are resilient to drugs and radiation.

Guzman believes that THC works by triggering the build-up of a chemical messenger known as ceramide, which in turn induces apoptosis (or programmed cell death) in mutated tumor cells. Subsequent research into the properties of THC has revealed that it is among the very few naturally occurring, harmless substances that are capable of inducing programmed cell death in cancerous cells. Other substances with this property include anandamide, other cannabinoids and tumor necrosis factors produced by the immune system in its attempt to fight cancer.

After months of effort to obtain funding for testing the medical effects of THC on human tissues, the Madrid science team was forced to abandon this project, although there is currently no effective treatment available for malignant brain tumors.

[Editor`s Note: NaturalNews is strongly against the use of all forms of animal testing. We fully support implementation of humane medical experimentation that promotes the health and wellbeing of all living creatures.]

Sources for this article include:

About the author

Raw Michelle is a natural health blogger and researcher, sharing her passions with others, using the Internet as her medium. She discusses topics in a straight forward way in hopes to help people from all walks of life achieve optimal health and well-being. She has authored and published hundreds of articles on topics such as the raw food diet and green living in general. In 2010, Michelle created, to share with people her approach to the raw food diet and detoxification.

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