Further research is available below on various diseases and how medical cannabis / cannabis extracts may provide positive benefit for patients. Please keep in mind that PCMG co-op does not make any medical claims for the treatment, prevention, or cure of any medical condition. Patients are advised to consult with their physicians on any matter of a medical nature.
Cannabis contains 483 compounds. At least 80 of these are cannabinoids, which are the basis for medical and scientific use of cannabis. This presents the research problem of isolating the effect of specific compounds and taking account of the interaction of these compounds.[Cannabinoids can serve as appetite stimulants, antiemetics, antispasmodics, and have some analgesic effects. Six important cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant are tetrahydrocannabinol,tetrahydrocannabinolic acid, cannabidiol, cannabinol, β-caryophyllene, and cannabigerol.
Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is the primary compound responsible for the psychoactive effects of cannabis. The compound is a mild analgesic, and cellular research has shown the compound has antioxidant activity. THC is believed to interact with parts of the brain normally controlled by the endogenous cannabinoid neurotransmitter, anandamide. Anandamide is believed to play a role in pain sensation, memory, and sleep.
Cannabidiol (CBD) is a major constituent of medical cannabis. CBD represents up to 40% of extracts of medical cannabis. Cannabidiol has been shown to relieve convulsion, inflammation, anxiety, cough, congestion and nausea, and it inhibits cancer cell growth. Recent studies have shown cannabidiol to be as effective as atypical antipsychotics in treating schizophrenia. Because cannabidiol relieves the aforementioned symptoms, cannabis strains with a high amount of CBD may benefit people with multiple sclerosis, frequent anxiety attacks and Tourette syndrome.
Cannabinol (CBN) is a therapeutic cannabinoid found in Cannabis sativa and Cannabis indica. It is also produced as a metabolite, or a breakdown product, of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).CBN acts as a weak agonist of the CB1 and CB2receptors, with lower affinity in comparison to THC.
Part of the mechanism by which medical cannabis has been shown to reduce tissue inflammation is via the compound β-caryophyllene. A cannabinoid receptor called CB2 plays a vital part in reducing inflammation in humans and other animals. β-Caryophyllene has been shown to be a selective activator of the CB2 receptor. β-Caryophyllene is especially concentrated in cannabis essential oil, which contains about 12–35% β-caryophyllene.
In the USA, the FDA has approved several cannabinoids for use as medical therapies: dronabinol (Marinol) and nabilone. These medicines are taken orally.
These medications are usually used when first line treatments for nausea and vomiting associated with cancer chemotherapy fail to work. In extremely high doses and in rare cases “psychotomimetic” side effects are possible. The other commonly used antiemetic drugs are not associated with these side effects.
Marinol’s manufacturer stated on their website: “The most frequently reported side effects in patients with AIDS during clinical studies involved the central nervous system (CNS). These CNS effects (euphoria, dizziness, or thinking abnormalities, for example) were reported by 33% of patients taking MARINOL”.Four documented fatalities resulting from Marinol have been reported.
Canasol is a cannabis-based medication for glaucoma that relieves intraocular pressure symptoms associated with late-stage glaucoma.
It was created by an ophthalmologist, Dr. Albert Lockhart and Dr. Manley E. West, and began distribution in 1987. As of 2003, it was still being distributed in the United Kingdom, several US states, and several Caribbean nations.
It is notable for being one of the first cannabis-containing pharmaceuticals to be developed for the modern pharmaceutical market and being one of the few such pharmaceuticals to have ever been legally marketed in the United States.
The prescription drug Sativex, an extract of cannabis administered as a sublingual spray, has been approved in Canada for the adjunctive treatment (use along side other medicines) of both multiple sclerosis and cancer related pain. Sativex has also been approved in the United Kingdom, New Zealand, and the Czech Republic, and is expected to gain approval in other European countries. William Notcutt is one of the chief researchers that has developed Sativex, and he has been working with GW and founder Geoffrey Guy since the company’s inception in 1998. Notcutt states that the use of MS as the disease to study “had everything to do with politics.”
|Nabilone||1985||USA, Canada||Nausea of cancer chemotherapy that has failed to respond adequately to other antiemetics||US$ 4000.00 for a year’s supply (in Canada)
|Canasol||1987||USA, Canada, several Caribbean nations||Introcular pressure associated with late-stage Glaucoma|
|Nausea and vomiting associated with cancer chemotherapy in patients who have failed to respond adequately to conventional treatments|
|1992||USA||Anorexia associated with AIDS–related weight loss
|Sativex||1995||Canada||Adjunctive treatment for the symptomatic relief of neuropathic pain in multiple sclerosis in adults|
|1997||Canada||Pain due to cancer|
Cannabis indica may have a CBD:THC ratio 4–5 times that of Cannabis sativa. Cannabis strains with relatively high CBD:THC ratios are less likely to induce anxiety than vice versa. This may be due to CBD’s antagonistic effects at the cannabinoid receptors, compared to THC’s partial agonist effect. CBD is also a 5-HT1A receptor agonist, which may also contribute to an anxiolytic effect. This likely means the high concentrations of CBD found in Cannabis indica mitigate the anxiogenic effect of THC significantly. The effects of sativa are well known for its cerebral high, hence used daytime as medical cannabis, while indica are well known for its sedative effects and preferred night time as medical cannabis.