Monday, October 12, 2009

International Researchers Reveal Medical Cannabis Breakthroughs!

This is phenomenal news! Even if you are not a doctor or scientist, we can understand the basics. Ahead are some highlights from the International Association for Cannabis as Medicine Conference held in Cologne, Germany. Please give the whole document a read, it's well worth it. Be sure to share it with friends, family, and your physicians too. Everyone should know about the medical benefits of cannabis! Note: After each summary, I've written my own personal layman interpretation in italics, and Bolding is mine.

Excerpts from:

International Association for Cannabis as Medicine
IACM 5th Conference on Cannabinoids in Medicine

2-3 October 2009, Cologne
Program and Abstracts
Copyright by
International Association for Cannabis as Medicine
Am Mildenweg 6
59602 RĂ¼then


In recent years much concern has arisen over the possibility that cannabis smoking in
adolescence may be a risk factor for schizophrenia in adult life, although this remains a
controversial issue. In contrast, considerable interest in the potential role of the non-psychoactive naturally occurring cannabinoid cannabidiol (CBD) as an anti-psychotic medicine has also developed. The anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory effects of both THC and CBD are well established. A systematic literature review has suggested the intriguing possibility that habitual cannabis use may protect cognitive function in schizophrenia patients, and CBD has been shown to improve a marker of this in healthy subjects.

There are preliminary data to suggest that cannabinoids may have beneficial effects on abnormal stress reaction, metabolic dysfunction and dyslipidaemia. Since the mechanism of action for the anti-psychotic effects of CBD and other cannabinoids almost certainly differs from all existing agents, synergistic combinations withboth typical and atypical antipsychotics are a possibility. Taken overall, these observations lead to the hypothesis that an appropriately formulated medicine containing a combination of selected cannabinoids may have the potential to target all the major components of the schizophrenia syndrome and thereby significantly reduce the need for polypharmacy.

In Layman's terms, Cannabis can help the symptoms of schizophrenia and cuts down the number of prescription drugs a person has to take.


"Based on these findings, the endogenous cannabinoid system may offer a novel target for the treatment of depressive disorders."

Cannabis can help treat depression.


Cannabis use for chronic pain over one year is not associated with major changes in lung,
endocrine, cognitive function or serious adverse events. The increase in non-serious adverse
events is consistent with those for pharmaceutical cannabinoids.

Cannabis is effective to treat pain with little dangerous side effects.


Background: Cannabinoids and opioids share several pharmacologic properties, including
antinociception, hypothermia, sedation, hypotension and inhibition of intestinal mobility and
locomotor activity. Data suggest the existence of independent but related analgesic pathways forcannabinoids and opioids such that the two may be synergistic. Cannabinoids may also
ameliorate opioid side effects, particularly nausea and vomiting.

Most patients reported further relief of their chronic pain with the addition of vaporized cannabis; these results will also be fully analyzed and presented.

Conclusions: The complete pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic results will be analyzed and presented. Cannabinoids may augment the analgesic effects of opioids, allowing longer treatment at lower doses with fewer side effects.

Grant Support:
NIDA R21 DA020831-01
NIDA N01-DA-3-8829
NCRR UL1 RR024131

Cannabis can help people lower their intake of prescription painkillers that have physical side-effects.

I note the grant support because a portion comes from NIDA - I wonder if they will publish these results on their website?


Conclusion The study met its primary objective to show superiority of cannabis extract over placebo in the treatment of muscle stiffness in MS. Secondary efficacy parameters corroborated these results. The profile of AEs in patients treated with cannabis extract was consistent with the known side effects of cannabinoids. No new safety concerns were raised.

Cannabis is a safe and effective treatment for those who suffer from Multiple Sclerosis.


Thus, we have analysed the gene expression profile of a large series of glioma cell lines, and have found a subset of genes with a marked differential expression in THC-sensitive vs. THC-resistant cells. Furthermore, we have identified growth factors such as amphiregulin as likely candidates to mediate the resistance of glioma cells to cannabinoid-induced apoptosis, thereby supporting the emerging notion that targeted inhibition of growth factor-evoked pro-survival signals can improve the efficacy of anticancer therapies. Altogether, these findings may set the basis for future clinical trials aimed at evaluating the potential activity of cannabinoids as anticancer agents.

Cannabis can fight Cancerous Brain Tumors, if this research had been continued from the 70's, Senator Ted Kennedy may well still be alive today.


Novel therapeutics. The recent demise of SR141716 as an anti-obesity drug probably
indicates that CB1 antagonists that penetrate the blood brain barrier will not open a new
therapeutic area, due to their side effects. However we can expect to see such compounds with
specific peripheral action, possibly as new drugs in liver, gastrointestinal and lung diseases. CB1 agonists are already used in several types of pathological conditions and we can expect their use in post trauma and pain. CB2 agonists should lead to new drugs in pain, inflammation and neurological diseases. A long list of additional approaches can be
visualized – from gastrointestinal to bone diseases. And we should not forget cannabidiol, which seems to act on too many disease states (anxiety, inflammation, cardiac conditions, schizophrenia etc) and yet has no major side effects.

Cannabis can be used to treat a myriad of diseases, ailments, and obesity safely.


A major breakthrough in marijuana-cannabinoid research has been the discovery of a previously unknown but elaborate endogenous endocannabinoid system (ECS) composed of endocannabinoids and the enzymes for their biosynthesis and degradation with genes encoding two distinct cannabinoid (CB1 and CB2) receptors (CBRs) that are activated by endocannabinoids, cannabinoids and marijuana use. Physical and genetic localization of the cannabinoid receptor CNR1 and CNR2 genes have been mapped to human chromosome 6 and 1 respectively. A number of variations in CBR genes have been associated with human disorders including osteoporosis, ADHD, PTSD, drug dependency, obesity and depression. The ubiquitous abundance and differential distribution of the ECS in the human body and brain along with the coupling to many signal transduction pathways may explain the effects in most biological system and the myriad behavioral effects associated with smoking marijuana. The remarkable progress in understanding the biological actions of marijuana and cannabinoids have provided a much richer than previously appreciated cannabinoid genomics and raised a number of critical issues on the molecular mechanisms of cannabinoid induced behavioral and biochemical alterations.

Our data also indicate a number of polymorphisms and sub-type cannabinoid receptor specificity indicating that marijuana use may not only be coded in our genes but may be exploited in disorders associated with disturbances of endocannabinoid system.

Yes, that just said that using marijuana may be a conditioned part of who we genetically, physically are and we can use it to benefit medical treatment. I wonder, could it be that the reason there is so much disease and health problems in our world is due to our bodies being deprived of Cannabis for over 70+ years now?


Cannabinoids have been proposed as promising medicines for the treatment of Parkinson’s
disease (PD), Huntington’s disease (HD) and other basal ganglia disorders, given the abundancy of elements of the cannabinoid signaling system in these structures and the relevance of their effects in the healthy basal ganglia but also in conditions of malfunctioning and/or degeneration.

CB2 receptor agonists may also exert a protective effect by limiting the toxicity of
reactive microglia for neurons typical of most neurodegenerative disorders.

Lastly, antioxidant cannabinoids may also serve to attenuate oxidative damage, another important cytotoxic event involved in the pathogenesis of most neurodegenerative disorders.

Cannabis has the potential to fight Parkinson's, Huntington's (which my uncle died of after years of painfully wasting away and losing all physical control of his body and speech, it was heartbreaking) and may also serve to protect us from these diseases.


Cannabis induced reframing of acoustic events may be of benefit for people
with hearing impairment.

Cannabis can help people hear!


Ethan Russo1, 2
120402 81st Avenue SW, Vashon Island, WA 98070 USA
2GW Pharmaceuticals, Porton Down Science Park, Salisbury SP4 0JQ UK

Introduction: Risks of cannabis usage have been debated for centuries, but despite such claims, it has been used therapeutically by humans for all of recorded time. Common concerns include pulmonary damage, increased cancer risk, dependency, cognitive changes, and mental health sequelae.

Methods: The author’s files and current literature were reviewed.

Results: Chronic use studies in recreational users in Jamaica, Greece, and Costa Rica in the
1970s-1980s documented minor pulmonary changes without significant neuropsychological or
other sequelae. The Chronic Use Study of 4 subjects employing high daily intake of cannabis
therapeutically over a long interval in the USA Compassionate Use Investigational New Drug
Program similarly demonstrated slight pulmonary function changes, with minimal executive
function effects, but no endocrine, immunological, neurophysiological or anatomical changes.
Surveys of therapeutic cannabis usage and adverse event recording from clinical trials of
cannabis and cannabis-based medicine document pulmonary complaints (from smoking) and
primarily CNS events such as nausea, dizziness, somnolence, or intoxication-type symptoms,
often of a transient nature. Problems claimed in relation to recreational cannabis usage, such as induction of cancer, depression, psychosis, suicidal ideation, addiction, etc., have not been reported to any significant degree in a therapeutic context to this point in time. Sativex was
tested as having a drug abuse liability equal to, or less than that of Marinol.

Conclusion: The pre-eminent risk of smoked cannabis in a therapeutic context is pulmonary,
including chronic cough and bronchitis. These problems can likely be minimized or eliminated
by alternative delivery systems such as vaporization, oral, or oro-mucosal administration. There is no current compelling evidence to support that cannabis increases risks of carcinogenesis, and it may induce a protective effect for some cancers (lung, head and neck). Long-term cognitive effects of cannabis in therapeutic applications seem to be within acceptable limits as compared to other medications employed to treat serious diseases and symptoms. Similarly, the drug abuse liability of cannabis-medicines seems relatively benign, especially when extra-pulmonary administration is utilized. Cannabis usage remains subject to criminal sanction in many jurisdictions, but apart from this, medical risks associated with such usage appear quite low. Suitable caution is advised in pediatric and adolescent populations.

Basically, this means that Humans have used Cannabis for thousands and thousands of years and the worst side effect may be chronic cough and bronchitis, it doesn't cause the physical damage that has been reported and may in fact protect us from certain cancers and diseases. The prohibition of Cannabis is unnecessary when compared to any physical detriment it may cause. To avoid any harms from smoking it, we can Vaporize it, eat or even drink it. And just like we do for prescription medications, alcohol and cigarettes we can regulate its sale to adults to hinder minors from obtaining it.

After reading about all of the medical conditions that cannabis can help from these top researchers from around the world I can only hope the mainstream media picks up on these scientific breakthroughs and lets the public know. Alternately, I wonder if Gil will even acknowledge the obvious facts from this conference - that cannabis is indeed showing great promise as a safe and effective medicine!

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