Beyond The Smoke: The Anticancer Properties Of Cannabis

Cannabis has many amazing healing properties that utilize the endocannabinoid system to reach target areas.  Scientists use this knowledge to target certain aspects of a condition depending on the symptoms.  It is well known that cannabis use can help cancer patients during the course of their battle, from increased appetite to pain relief.  Scientists have been uncovering cannabis’ anticancer effects as well.  This promising research is clearing the way so that one day we will fully understand this miracle plant.  Below are studies where science has looked at cannabis therapy when applied to cancer cells.  Please feel free to share and as always I encourage all to do their own research.  Please note that a lot of these are NEW 2012 released research which is really exciting! ~ Cherry Girl

CANNABIDIOL AS POTENTIAL ANTICANCER DRUG
Over the past years, several lines of evidence support an antitumorigenic effect of cannabinoids including Δ(9) -tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ(9) -THC), synthetic agonists, endocannabinoids and endocannabinoid transport or degradation inhibitors.

Non-THC Cannabinoids Counteract Prostate Carcinoma Growth In Vitro and In Vivo: Pro-Apoptotic Effects and Underlying Mechanisms 2012
Cannabinoid receptor activation induces prostate carcinoma cell…In LNCaP cells, the pro-apoptotic effect of CBD was only partly due to TRPM8 antagonism and was accompanied by down-regulation of AR, p53 activation and elevation of reactive oxygen species. LNCaP cells differentiated to androgen-insensitive neuroendocrine-like cells were more sensitive to CBD-induced apoptosis. Conclusions. These data support the clinical testing of CBD against prostate carcinoma.

Role of Lipid Rafts/Caveolae in the Anticancer Effect of Endocannabinoids 2012
The endocannabinoid system comprises the cannabinoid receptors type 1 (CB1) and type 2 (CB2), their endogenous ligands (endocannabinoids) and the whole apparatus… drugs targeting the endocannabinoid system might be used to retard or block cancer growth… Perturbation of lipid rafts/caveolae may in fact represent a useful tool for the development of a novel therapy for endocannabinoids-related diseases, such as cancer.

Update On the Endocannabinoid System As An Anticancer Target
Recent studies have shown that the endocannabinoid system (ECS) could offer an attractive antitumor target.  One direction that should be pursued in antitumor therapy is to select compounds with reduced psychoactivity. This is known to be connected to the CB1 receptor; thus, targeting the CB2 receptor is a popular objective. CB1 receptors could be maintained as a target to design new compounds, and mixed CB1-CB2 ligands could be effective if they are able to not cross the BBB. Furthermore, targeting the ECS with agents that activate cannabinoid receptors or inhibitors of endogenous degrading systems such as fatty acid amide hydrolase inhibitors may have relevant therapeutic impact on tumor growth. Additional studies into the downstream consequences of endocannabinoid treatment are required and may illuminate other potential therapeutic targets.

Use of Cannabinoid Receptor Agonists In Cancer Therapy As Palliative and Curative Agents
Emerging evidence suggests that agonists of cannabinoid receptors expressed by tumour cells may offer a novel strategy to treat cancer. In this chapter we review the more recent results generating interest in the field of cannabinoids and cancer, and provide novel suggestions for the development, exploration and use of cannabinoid agonists for cancer therapy, not only as palliative but also as curative drugs.

Inhibitory Effects of Cannabinoid CB1 Receptor Stimulation on Tumor Growth and Metastatic Spreading: Actions on Signals Involved in Angiogenesis and Metastasis
Stimulation of cannabinoid CB1 receptors by 2-methyl-arachidonyl-2′-fluoro-ethylamide (Met-F-AEA) inhibits the growth of a rat thyroid cancer cell-derived tumor in athymic mice by inhibiting the activity of the oncogene product p21ras.  Three weeks from the paw injection of 3LL cells, Met-F-AEA reduced significantly the number of metastatic nodes, in a way antagonized by SR141716A. Our findings indicate that CB1 receptor agonists might be used therapeutically to retard tumor growth in vivo by inhibiting at once tumor growth, angiogenesis, and metastasis.

Good News For CB1 Receptors: Endogenous Agonists Are in the Right Place
Good news for CB1 receptors: endogenous agonists are in the right place” and “CB1 receptor agonists might be used therapeutically to retard tumor growth in vivo by inhibiting at once tumor growth, angiogenesis, and metastasis.

Cannabis And Autism: We Need Your Help

NORML and the Unconventional Foundation for Autism has teamed up to bring awareness to the need for research and children with autism.  For more information please visit http://www.UF4A.org or http://www.NORML.org
Click Here for the survey

Over the last five years there have been numerous media reports about the anecdotal use of cannabis to help autistic children. Two brave women, one on the east coast the other the west, have been at the forefront of this effort to help scientifically explain why cannabis appears to be so helpful. Marie Myung-Ok Lee wrote about her experience in Rhode Island, a state with medical cannabis laws, in 2009. Soon after, inspired by Marie’s writings, Mieko Perez Hester and her son had a similarly positive experience with treating his autism in California. Mieko, soon after going public about their experience, was invited onto ABC’s Good Morning America.

The reply from parents around the country to these charter members of the NORML Women Alliance experience as parents using cannabis as a therapy for their autistic children has been overwhelming and inspired the need to perform proper scientific research to possibly develop cannabinoid-based treatments for autism in both children and adults.

To help accomplish this Mieko established The Unconventional Foundation for Autism (UF4A), which is asking the NORML community of hundreds of thousands of cannabis consumers and patients to help with a scientific survey today.

The NORML community has joined UF4A in this remarkable journey and fight, and has offered to help solicit feedback through the survey.

Target: Persons on the autism spectrum currently using or interested in using cannabis as a safe and effective medication to treat autism.

With more than 1 in 88 children affected, autism is the fastest growing developmental disability in the United States. Currently, there is no medical detection or cure for autism; however, there are pharmaceutical and therapeutic treatments that have proven to be effective in treating the condition. Among the safest and most remarkable is the therapeutic use of medical cannabis.

Amidst a highly controversial setting, one California mother is sharing her autistic son’s triumphant and life-saving journey with the world. Single mother of three, Mieko Hester Perez was watching her young son, Joey, succumb to various combinations of 13 different prescription drugs that ravaged his body and internal organs. Joey weighed only 46 pounds, and was in a battle for his life.

In 2009, The Unconventional Foundation for Autism (UF4A) was formed. UF4A is lighting a path in hopes that others may benefit from alternative therapies that may be available to other families on the Autism Spectrum. Mieko helped create a survey to help solidify and amplify her results and the level of help the Foundation can provide.

At UF4A, we believe providing the most accurate information to medical professionals for research purposes will pave the way for clinical trials for unconventional treatments.

We seek to solidify and further the fundamental understanding we have in regards to the effectiveness of cannabis alleviating symptoms along the Autism Spectrum. The information collected in the survey will be used to further guide families, new patients, doctors and lawmakers in making informed and proper decisions for themselves and our community.

SURVEY LINK:
https://spreadsheets.google.com/spreadsheet/viewform?formkey=dG9wYmVjaVhQdXpXWVVYbUtjaDR0UGc6MQ

If this survey applicable to you or a loved one, we invite you or them to fill out the form UF4A Treatment of Persons on the Spectrum with Cannabis. To fill out the survey, click here.

-Allen St. Pierre
Executive Director
NORML

Cannabis: Your Heart Hero

More and more Americans are being classified as obese.  With obesity comes other complications such as cardiovascular disease.  Cardiovascular disease refers to any disease that affects the cardiovascular system, principally cardiac disease, vascular diseases of the brain and kidney, and peripheral arterial disease.  The causes of cardiovascular disease are diverse but atherosclerosis and/or hypertension are the most common.  It is estimated that one-third of Americans die from cardiovascular disease so it is no wonder that scientists have been hard at work trying to find a cure.   Below you will see studies where science has looked at cannabis compounds when applied to CVD.  Please feel free to share and I encourage all do their own research as well ~ Cherry Girl

Targeting Cannabinoid Receptor CB(2 ) in Cardiovascular Disorders: Promises and Controversies
“Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death and disability worldwide, which can be largely attributed to atherosclerosis, a chronic inflammation of the arteries… the lipid endocannabinoid system has emerged as a new therapeutic target in variety of disorders associated with inflammation and tissue injury, including those of the cardiovascular system. The discovery that delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ9-THC), the main active constituent of marijuana, inhibited atherosclerotic plaque progression via a cannabinoid 2 (CB(2) ) receptor-dependent anti-inflammatory mechanism.

Endocannabinoid System in Cardiovascular Disorders – New Pharmacotherapeutic Opportunities
The evidence so far gathered shows that the modulation of ECS (as agonism or antagonism of its receptors) is an enormous potential field for research and intervention in multiple areas of human pathophysiology. The development of selective drugs for the CB1 and CB2 receptors may open a door to new therapeutic regimens.

Never Fear Cannabis Is Here! How Cannabis Can Help With Fear, Anxiety, and Other Psychiatric Disorders

Nearly 19 million Americans suffer from a  psychiatric disorder which could include disorders such as specific phobias, generalized anxiety disorder, social anxiety disorder, panic disorder, agoraphobia, obsessive-compulsive disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder.  Many veterans returning from war have found cannabis to be a relief from PTSD.  Below you will studies where science has studied the effects of cannabis compounds when applied to psychiatric disorders.  Please feel free to share and I encourage all to do their own research as well ~ Cherry Girl

The Endocannabinoid System in the Processing of Anxiety and Fear and How CB1 Receptors May Modulate Fear Extinction 
The endocannabinoid system recently emerged as an important modulator of many neuronal functions. Among them, the control of anxiety and acquired fear represents nowadays one of the most interesting fields of research.  Finally, a neurobiological model possibly able to implement the role of the endocannabinoid system in these processes will be proposed.

CB1 Cannabinoid Receptors Modulate Kinase and Phosphatase Activity During Extinction of Conditioned Fear in Mice
Cannabinoid receptors type 1 (CB1) play a central role in both short-term and long-term extinction of auditory-cued fear memory.  We propose that the endogenous cannabinoid system modulates extinction of aversive memories, at least in part via regulation of the activity of kinases and phosphatases in a brain structure-dependent manner.

Extinction of Emotional Response As A Novel Approach of Pharmacotherapy of Anxiety Disorders 
The patogenesis of anxiety may be related to the process of an extinction of aversive memories… Studies on molecular and cellular mechanisms responsible for individual fear extinction may serve as the basis of search for more effective forms of clinical treatment… ligands stimulating endogenous cannabinoid system… these substances stimulate different central mechanisms, they appear to act synergistically, to improve the behavioural therapy.

Enhancing Cannabinoid Neurotransmission Augments the Extinction of Conditioned Fear
the findings in the present study suggest that augmenting eCB-mediated neurotransmission by inhibition of eCB transport or breakdown may provide a novel mechanism for enhancing the extinction of fear. As such, eCB reuptake inhibitors may serve as useful adjuncts in the treatment of anxiety disorders (such as PTSD, panic disorder, and OCD) as well as drug addiction and other disorders that respond to behavioral treatments utilizing extinction processes.

The Endogenous Cannabinoid System Controls Extinction of Aversive Memories
Acquisition and storage of aversive memories is one of the basic principles of central nervous systems throughout the animal kingdom. In the absence of reinforcement, the resulting behavioural response will gradually diminish to be finally extinct.  We propose that endocannabinoids facilitate extinction of aversive memories through their selective inhibitory effects on local inhibitory networks in the amygdala.

The Endocannabinoid system and Extinction Learning
As several human psychiatric disorders, such as phobia, generalized anxiety disorders, and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) appear to involve aberrant memory processing and impaired adaptation to changed environmental conditions, the hope has been fuelled that the endocannabinoid system might be a valuable therapeutic target for the treatment of these disorders.

Bringing the War Back Home: Mental Health Disorders Among 103,788 US Veterans Returning From Iraq and Afghanistan Seen at Department of Veterans Affairs Facilities
Co-occurring mental health diagnoses and psychosocial problems were detected early and in primary care medical settings in a substantial proportion of OEF/OIF veterans seen at VA facilities. Targeted early detection and intervention beginning in primary care settings are needed to prevent chronic mental illness and disability.

Psychosis and Trauma. Theorical Links Between Post-Traumatic and Psychotic Symptoms
The links between psychotic and psycho-traumatic symptoms are complex and multidirectional; this co-occurrence is a factor of seriousness. The clinician, while paying attention to these symptoms, has to distinguish the structure of the personality of the subject to articulate the psychotherapy and the pharmacological treatment. Further investigational studies may determine whether antipsychotics will enhance treatment response in PTSD patients with psychotic features.

How Some Green Can Help The Blues

Americans across the nation are facing mounting pressure from the economy and many other challenges.  Many are also suffering with depression and mood disorders along with added pressures.  The average American who has tried cannabis well knows the mood elevating effects which include uncontrollable giggling or laughter.  Of course it is also dependent on the right strain but that is where science comes in.  Below you will see studies where scientists have discovered why our moods are altered as well as further the knowledge we have on the interactions of cannabis’ compounds and our bodies.  Please feel free to share and I encourage all to do their own research as well ~ Cherry Girl

The Dopamine and Cannabinoid Interaction in the Modulation of Emotions and Cognition: Assessing the Role of Cannabinoid CB1 Receptor in Neurons Expressing Dopamine D1 Receptors
Although cannabinoid CB1 receptors (CB1Rs) are densely expressed in neurons expressing dopamine D1 receptors (D1Rs), it is not fully understood to what extent they modulate emotional behaviors…….These results provided first direct evidence for a cross-talk between dopaminergic D1Rs and endocannabinoid system in terms of controlling negative affect.

Effects of Cannabinoids Δ(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol, Δ(9)-tetrahydrocannabinolic Acid and Cannabidiol in MPP(+) Affected Murine Mesencephalic Cultures
Cannabinoids derived from Cannabis sativa demonstrate neuroprotective properties… Therefore we studied some major cannabinoids, i.e. delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinolic acid (THCA), delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD) in mice mesencephalic cultures for their protective capacities… our data show that cannabinoids THC and THCA protect dopaminergic neurons against MPP(+) induced cell death.” (Possibly due to the cross-talk between  the dopamine and cannabinoid systems as seen in the study above)

Antidepressant-like Effect of Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol and Other Cannabinoids Isolated From Cannabis
Results of this study show that Δ9-THC and other cannabinoids exert antidepressant-like actions, and thus may contribute to the overall mood-elevating properties of cannabis.

 

Cannabis: Part Of A Healthy Diet?

Cannabis has been used in a variety of ways for thousands of years.  One of the unique things about the cannabis plant is how versatile and green the plant truly is.  It can be grown organically leaving behind virtually no footprint as well as being used in whole when harvested.  Many people believe in the power of natural remedies including a natural foods diet.  Cannabis, especially the seeds are known for their nutritional value including antioxidants.  Below you will find studies that look at the dietary value of cannabis as well as helpful side effects.  Please feel free to share ~ Cherry Girl

Antioxidant Activities and Oxidative Stabilities of Some Unconventional Oilseeds
“Hempseed (Cannabis sativa), in addition to its nutritional value, has demonstrated positive health benefits, including the lowering of cholesterol and high blood pressure… As a result of the present research, the analyzed oils could be evaluated as an alternative to traditionally consumed vegetable oils…

Health Benefits of Herbs and Spices: the Past, the Present, the Future
Health benefits of herbs and spices: the past, the present, the future… The real challenge lies not in proving whether foods, such as herbs and spices, have health benefits, but in defining what these benefits are… At present, recommendations are warranted to support the consumption of foods rich in bioactive components, such as herbs and spices. With time, we can expect to see a greater body of scientific evidence supporting the benefits of herbs and spices in the overall maintenance of health and protection from disease.

Several Culinary and Medicinal Herbs Are Important Sources of Dietary Antioxidants
In a normal diet, intake of herbs may therefore contribute significantly to the total intake of plant antioxidants, and be an even better source of dietary antioxidants than many other food groups such as fruits, berries, cereals and vegetables.

Neuroprotective Antioxidants From Marijuana
As evidence that cannabinoids can act as an antioxidants in neuronal cultures, cannabidiol was demonstrated to reduce hydroperoxide toxicity in neurons. In a head to head trial of the abilities of various antioxidants to prevent glutamate toxicity, cannabidiol was superior to both alpha-tocopherol and ascorbate in protective capacity. Recent preliminary studies in a rat model of focal cerebral ischemia suggest that cannabidiol may be at least as effective in vivo as seen in these in vitro studies.

Cannabidiol and (-)Delta9-Tetrahydrocannabinol Are Neuroprotective Antioxidants
Cannabidiol was more protective against glutamate neurotoxicity than either ascorbate or alpha-tocopherol, indicating it to be a potent antioxidant. These data also suggest that the naturally occurring, nonpsychotropic cannabinoid, cannabidiol, may be a potentially useful therapeutic agent for the treatment of oxidative neurological disorders such as cerebral ischemia. 

 

Cannabis Prohibition: Is It Really Keeping Our Children Safe?

Many a bored teen will hang out with friends and be faced with choosing to use drugs or not.  Many government officials as well as parents tout the War on Drugs as a savior to our children.  They say that it keeps the drugs out of the hands of minors, off the streets and out of schools.  With the economy shining a spotlight onto finances one can quickly see how big of a budget the War on Drugs consumes.  With taking all the different facets of this war into account some wonder if its really working.

The War on Drugs has been waging for over 40 years.  It has cost the tax-payers over $14 trillion, billions annually.  There have been surges and wanes over the 40 years in intensity in the pursuit to eradicate drug use.  Over the years we have witnessed many tragedies and successes.  We have seen harmful drug use drop among the population but especially minors.  We have also seen over the last 18 months an intensity like never before in the use of intimidation tactics, SWAT style raids against state legal patients, abuse, or lethal force when pursuing cannabis users.

With more education and information available to teens today many are able to see through the hypocrisy and lies.  Teens can see you are lying especially when they try cannabis, realize that it is not going to kill them and that they actually like the effects.  With alcohol, who’s effects are similar to cannabis but with much more harm at stake, not only available for sale but advertised everywhere including major sports events it is hard to see the difference.  When they see you are lying about cannabis they question other “truths” you have been telling them.

Simple cannabis possession or other non-violent cannabis related offenses can claim your driver’s license, student loans, subsidized housing, or federal grants.  It can jail a parent or guardian even if they are state and county legal.  With a parent jailed it costs tax-payers more to incarcerate and breaks up a family where the children are thrown into the broken foster care system.  All of us should be asking if this is really what is best for our children.

Children that go into the system cost tax-payers millions each year.  It costs the child emotionally and psychologically.   Children that grow up in the system are bounced around to different homes causing them to act out, perform poorly in school, drop out, get into legal trouble and end up repeating their parents mistakes.  Should we really treat cannabis related offenses this harshly?  Are these tactics really working?

Cannabis use was slightly higher this year but more harmful drugs, including alcohol, were reportedly down according to a recent study among teens use.  Those that take a quick look around or have a conversation with a teen will learn how easily drugs are accessible.  Each year D.E.A. officials boast of their catches but in reality they have barely scratched the surface.  Even with officials raiding and confiscating thousands of plants, California’s number one cash crop was still cannabis.  The plain truth is that it is a plant that can be grown in anyone’s home.  It can be kept from anyone’s knowledge provided the grower is smart.  It can be accessed through many avenues including access through children.

Drug cartels have taken notice of America’s love of drugs and has very outstretched networks that effect our children.  The violence and corruption that comes along with the cartels are infiltrating our schools.  The cartels lure children with money or threats using them as drug runners, smugglers or sellers.  They know that if children are caught the punishment is less.  The also know that it takes less money to impress children.  In this way they have been able to utilize children to sell to others including their peers thus spurring not only more drug use but recruiting even more children.

California has a heavily burdened prison and welfare system.  They have a large amount of incarcerated inmates for cannabis related crimes.  Our nation has been fighting this war for far too long.  Even our children see the truth about cannabis.  Isn’t it time we started talking about this subject from a new perspective?  Our law enforcement agencies have received cuts across the states including here in California.  Our streets are not safer.  Drug use has not been eradicated even after over 40 years.  Families are broken, children are effected, states are bankrupt and in the end drugs are still easily accessible at any school.  Isn’t it time we end the War on Drugs and start with a new approach?

Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA) and Cannabis

This week the nation was heart broken to learn that little Avery Canahuati, 5 month-old girl who had SMA, died Monday April 30th.  Avery became an internet sensation with her bucket list.   It is estimated that spinal muscular atrophy occurs in between one-in-6,000 and one-in-20,000 births.  Avery’s parents want to spread the word about SMA so that more research can be done to better understand SMA.  Below you will see studies where scientists have studied the interaction of cannabis compounds when applied to SMA situations as well as a little background as to how the Endocannabinoid system ties into SMA.  Please feel free to share ~ Cherry Girl

TRPV4 Mutations in Children With Congenital Distal Spinal Muscular Atrophy
Functional analysis of the novel p.P97R mutation in a heterologous system demonstrated a loss-of-function mechanism. Protein localization studies in muscle, skin, and cultured skin fibroblasts from both patients showed normal protein expression. No TRPV4 mutations were detected in four children with dSMA without bone or vocal cord involvement. Adding to the clinical and molecular heterogeneity of TRPV4-associated diseases, our results suggest that molecular testing of the TRPV4 gene is warranted in cases of congenital dSMA with bone abnormalities and vocal cord paralysis.

Alterations in the Ankyrin Domain of TRPV4 Cause Congenital Distal SMA, Scapuloperoneal SMA and HMSN2C
Expression of mutant TRPV4 constructs in cells from the HeLa line revealed diminished surface localization of mutant proteins. In addition, TRPV4-regulated Ca(2+) influx was substantially reduced even after stimulation with 4alphaPDD, a TRPV4 channel-specific agonist, and with hypo-osmotic solution. In summary, we describe a new hereditary channelopathy caused by mutations in TRPV4 and present evidence that the resulting substitutions in the N-terminal ankyrin domain affect channel maturation, leading to reduced surface expression of functional TRPV4 channels.

TRPV4-mediated channelopathies
In addition, there are some potential signaling events that can also be involved in these genetic disorders. In this review, we analyzed how and what extent certain cellular and molecular functions like oligomerization, surface expression, ubiquitination and functional interactions might be affected by these mutations.

TRPV Channels and Vascular Function
TRPV1 and TRPV4 are expressed in sensory nerves and can cause vasodilation through calcitonin gene-related peptide and substance P release as well as mediating vascular function via the baroreceptor reflex (TRPV1) or via increasing sympathetic outflow during osmotic stress (TRPV4). Thus, TRPV channels play important roles in the regulation of normal and pathological cellular function in the vasculature.

Tempo and Mode in the Endocannabinoid System
Using an extended haplotype homozygosity analysis of SNP data from the HapMap database. Significant evidence (p < 0.05) of a positive “selective sweep” was exhibited by PTPN22, TRPV1, NAPE-PLD, and DAGLalpha. In conclusion, the endocannabinoid system is collectively under strong purifying selection, although some genes show evidence of adaptive evolution.

Cannabinoid Actions at TRPV Channels: Effects on TRPV3 and TRPV4 and Their Potential Relevance to Gastrointestinal Inflammation
Cannabinoids can affect both the activity and the expression of TRPV1-4 channels, with various potential therapeutic applications, including in the gastrointestinal tract.   Cannabinol and cannabigerol were significantly more efficacious at desensitizing this channel to the action of 4-α-phorbol 12,13-didecanoate (4α-PDD) than at activating it; (iii) CBC reduced TRPV1β, TRPV3 and TRPV4 mRNA in the jejunum, and TRPV3 and TRPV4 mRNA in the ileum of croton oil-treated mice.


Central Nervous Disease and Cannabis

It is estimated that over 50 million Americans are affected by disease or disorders of the spinal cord and brain.  Central nervous system disease affects either the spinal cord (myelopathy) or brain (encephalopathy).  Disorders includes spinal cord injury, memory loss, addiction, schizophrenia, learning disability, depression, violence, stroke, brain injury, dementia, and many others.  Scientists have studied cannabis compounds when applied to CNS disease and below you will find those studies.
Please feel free to share ~ Cherry Girl

Therapeutic Potential of Cannabinoids in CNS Disease
The major psychoactive constituent of Cannabis sativa, delta(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol (delta(9)-THC), and endogenous cannabinoid ligands, such as anandamide, signal through G-protein-coupled cannabinoid receptors… Signalling is mostly inhibitory and suggests a role for cannabinoids as therapeutic agents in CNS disease… Anecdotal evidence suggests that patients with disorders such as multiple sclerosis smoke cannabis to relieve disease-related symptoms. Cannabinoids can alleviate tremor and spasticity in animal models of multiple sclerosis… Evidence suggests that cannabinoids may prove useful in Parkinson’s disease… The inhibitory effect of cannabinoids… suggests they may be potent neuroprotective agents…cannabinoids may be effective analgesics. Indeed, in clinical trials of postoperative and cancer pain and pain associated with spinal cord injury, cannabinoids have proven more effective than placebo… Acute adverse effects following cannabis usage include sedation and anxiety. These effects are usually transient and may be less severe than those that occur with existing therapeutic agents. The use of nonpsychoactive cannabinoids such as cannabidiol may allow the dissociation of unwanted psychoactive effects from potential therapeutic benefits… This review highlights recent advances in understanding of the endocannabinoid system and indicates CNS disorders that may benefit from the therapeutic effects of cannabinoid treatment.

Cannabinoids.  Current Drug Targets CNS Disorders Neurol Disorders
Since the discovery of an endogenous cannabinoid system, research into the pharmacology and therapeutic potential of cannabinoids has steadily increased… Properties of CB receptor agonists that are of therapeutic interest include analgesia, muscle relaxation, immunosuppression, anti-inflammation, antiallergic effects, improvement of mood, stimulation of appetite, antiemesis, lowering of intraocular pressure, bronchodilation, neuroprotection and antineoplastic effects… CB receptor antagonists are under investigation for medical use in obesity and nicotine addiction. Additional potential was proposed for the treatment of alcohol and heroine dependency, schizophrenia, conditions with lowered blood pressure, Parkinson’s disease and memory impairment in Alzheimer’s disease.

Antiepileptic Potential of Cannabidiol Analogs
These data suggest anticonvulsant requirements of 2 free phenolic hydroxyl groups, exact positioning of the terpinoid moiety in the resorcinol system and correct stereochemistry. Moreover, findings of separation of anticonvulsant from neurotoxic and psychoactive activities, notably with CBD diacetate, suggest that additional structural modifications of CBD may yield novel antiepileptic drugs.

Structure-Anticonvulsant Activity Relationships of Cannabidiol Analogs
The compounds were evaluated for anti-convulsant activity in seizure susceptible (AGS) rats and for neurotoxicity in the rat rotorod (ROT) test. Comparisons of stereoisomers of CBD and several analogs revealed a general lack of stereoselectivity for anticonvulsant and other CNS properties of this class of compounds.

Antiepileptic Potential of Cannabidiol Analogs
Also, CBD and all analogs were not active in tetrahydrocannabinol seizure-susceptible rabbits, the latter a putative model of cannabinoid psychoactivity in humans. These data suggest anticonvulsant requirements of 2 free phenolic hydroxyl groups, exact positioning of the terpinoid moiety in the resorcinol system and correct stereochemistry. Moreover, findings of separation of anticonvulsant from neurotoxic and psychoactive activities, notably with CBD diacetate, suggest that additional structural modifications of CBD may yield novel antiepileptic drugs.

An Electrophysiological Analysis of the Anticonvulsant Action of Cannabidiol on Limbic Seizures in Conscious Rats
An electrophysiological analysis of the anticonvulsant action of cannabidiol (CBD, from cannabis) on limbic seizures in conscious rats…CBD was the most efficacious of the drugs tested… Other properties of CBD were also noted: For example, compared with delta 9-THC, it is a much more selective anticonvulsant vis-à-vis motor toxicity…These characteristics, combined with its apparently unique set of electrophysiological properties, support the suggestion that CBD has therapeutic potential as an antiepileptic.

Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics Cannabidiol Displays Antiepileptiform and Antiseizure Properties In Vitro and In Vivo
“CBD (cannabidiol) is the major nonpsychoactive component of Cannabis sativa whose structure was first described by Mechoulam and Shvo (1963); CBD has recently attracted renewed interest for its therapeutic potential in a number of disease states. CBD has been proposed to possess anticonvulsive, neuroprotective, and anti-inflammatory properties in humans… within the CNS, CBD has been proposed to be protective against epilepsy, anxiety, and psychosis and to ameliorate diseases.

Cannabidiol–Antiepileptic Drug Comparisons and Interactions in Experimentally Induced Seizures in Rats
“A comparison of the anticonvulsant… effects of cannabidiol (CBD), delta 9tetrahydrocannabinol, cannabinol and antiepileptic drugs (phenytoin, phenobarbital, carbamazepine, chlordiazepoxide, clonazepam, ethosuximide and trimethadione) was made… These data indicate that CBD is an effective anticonvulsant with a specificity more comparable to drugs clinically effective in major than minor seizures. Furthermore, it appears that CBD enhances the anticonvulsant effects.

Cannabis and Liver Disease

The human liver is the largest organ in the body.  It has many functions as well as afflictions.  Some are inherited and others are through abuse or viruses.  There are many kinds of liver diseases. Viruses cause some of them, like hepatitis A, hepatitis B and hepatitis C. Others can be the result of drugs, poisons or drinking too much alcohol. If the liver forms scar tissue because of an illness, it’s called cirrhosis.  Jaundice, or yellowing of the skin, can be one sign of liver disease.  Like other parts of your body, cancer can affect the liver. You could also inherit a liver disease such as hemochromatosis.  Below are studies that show the interaction of cannabis compounds and the liver.  Please feel free to share ~ Cherry Girl

The Endocannabinoid System As A Novel Target For the Treatment of Liver Fibrosis
We have recently demonstrated that CB1 and CB2 receptors display opposite effects in the regulation of liver fibrogenesis during chronic liver injury. Indeed, both receptors are up-regulated in the liver of cirrhotic patients, and expressed in liver fibrogenic cells. Moreover, CB1 receptors are profibrogenic and accordingly, the CB1 antagonist rimonabant reduces fibrosis progression in three experimental models. In keeping with these results, daily cannabis smoking is a risk factor for fibrosis progression in patients with chronic hepatitis C. In contrast, CB2 display antifibrogenic effects, by a mechanism involving reduction of liver fibrogenic cell accumulation. These results may offer new perspectives for the treatment of liver fibrosis, combining CB2 agonist and CB1 antagonist therapy.

The Endocannabinoid System and Liver Diseases
The endocannabinoid system and liver diseases… molecules targeting the CB(1) and CB(2) receptors may represent potential therapeutic agents for the treatment of liver diseases. At present, the CB(1) antagonists represent the most attractive pharmaceutical tool to resolve fat accumulation in patients with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease and to treat patients with cirrhosis, as they may slow the progression of fibrosis and attenuate the cardiovascular alterations associated with the advanced stage of the disease.

Endocannabinoids in Liver Disease
Marijuana has been used for its psychoactive and medicinal properties for millennia. As other plant-derived substances, marijuana has been slow to yield its secrets, with insights into its mechanism of action beginning to emerge only during the last decades… Endocannabinoids are lipid mediators of the same cannabinoid (CB) receptors that mediate the effects of marijuana… Although the documented therapeutic potential of CB(1) blockade is limited by neuropsychiatric side effects, these may be mitigated by using novel, peripherally restricted CB(1) antagonists.

Endogenous Cannabinoids in Liver Disease: Many Darts For A Single Target
Endogenous cannabinoids are ubiquitous lipid-signaling molecules able to partially mimic the actions produced by Delta(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol, the compound responsible for most of the effects of marijuana… The endocannabinoid system is involved in the pathogenesis of the cardiovascular dysfunction occurring in advanced liver disease and also plays a role in the pathogenesis of portal hypertension and liver fibrosis… These findings indicate that the endocannabinoid system may open new avenues for the therapeutic regulation of fibrosis and portal hypertension in advanced liver disease.

Cannabinoid Receptors As New Targets of Antifibrosing Strategies During Chronic Liver Diseases
Cannabinoid receptors as new targets of antifibrosing strategies during chronic liver diseases… Chronic liver injury exposes the patient to liver fibrosis and its end stage, cirrhosis, is a major public health problem worldwide… prevailing causes of cirrhosis include chronic alcohol consumption, hepatitis C virus infection and non-alcoholic steatohepatitis…. the authors recently demonstrated that the endocannabinoid system shows promise as a novel target for antifibrotic therapy during chronic liver injury. Indeed, cannabinoid receptors CB1 and CB2 promote dual pro- and antifibrogenic effects, respectively. Therefore, endocannabinoid-based therapies, combining CB2 agonists and CB1 antagonists may open novel therapeutic perspectives for the treatment of chronic liver diseases.

CB1 Cannabinoid Receptor Antagonism: A New Strategy For the Treatment of Liver Fibrosis
Hepatic fibrosis, the common response associated with chronic liver diseases, ultimately leads to cirrhosis, a major public health problem worldwide.  Genetic or pharmacological inactivation of CB1 receptors decreased fibrogenesis by lowering hepatic transforming growth factor (TGF)-beta1 and reducing accumulation of fibrogenic cells in the liver after apoptosis and growth inhibition of hepatic myofibroblasts. In conclusion, our study shows that CB1 receptor antagonists hold promise for the treatment of liver fibrosis.

Role of Cannabinoids in Chronic Liver Diseases
The role of the endocannabinoid system in hepatic physiology and pathologic conditions has been studied recently. Unquestionably, influencing endocannabinoid signaling may have a beneficial effect on delaying or even reversing hepatic fibrosis.

CB2 Receptors As New Therapeutic Targets For Liver Diseases
phytocannabinoids have long been used for recreational and therapeutic purposes… studies have unravelled pleiotropic functions of CB2 receptors under physiological and pathological conditions, including acute and chronic liver diseases. Additional functions may soon arise… These findings may open novel therapeutic avenues, upon clinical development of CB2-specific molecules.

Beneficial Paracrine Effects of Cannabinoid Receptor 2 on Liver Injury and Regeneration
CONCLUSION: CB2 receptors reduce liver injury and promote liver regeneration following acute insult, via distinct paracrine mechanisms involving hepatic myofibroblasts. These results suggest that CB2 agonists display potent hepatoprotective (ability to prevent damage to the liver) properties, in addition to their antifibrogenic effects.

Cannabinoid Receptor Type I Modulates Alcohol-Induced Liver Fibrosis
CB1 expression is upregulated in human ALF (alcoholic liver fibrosis ) which is at least in part triggered by acetaldehyde (AA) and oxidative stress. Inhibition of CB1… or via genetic knock-out protects against alcoholic-induced fibrosis in vitro and in vivo….CB1 antagonists have been used in treating alcohol dependence without causing significant depression.

The Endocannabinoid System As A Key Mediator During Liver Diseases: New Insights and Therapeutic Openings
“The endocannabinoid system as a key mediator during liver diseases: new insights and therapeutic openings… hepatic cannabinoid receptor 2 (CB(2)) receptors display beneficial effects on alcoholic fatty liver, hepatic inflammation, liver injury, regeneration and fibrosis. Cannabinoid receptor 1 (CB(1)) receptors have been implicated in the pathogenesis of several lesions such as alcoholic and metabolic steatosis, liver fibrogenesis, or circulatory failure associated with cirrhosis… data obtained with peripherally restricted CB(1) antagonists give real hopes in the development of active CB(1) molecules devoid of central adverse effects.

Pathogenesis of Alcohol-Induced Liver Disease: Classical Concepts and Recent Advances
Alcoholic liver disease (ALD) is a primary consequence of heavy and prolonged drinking.  The observation that ALD and non-alcoholic steatohepatitis share common pathways and genetic polymorphisms suggests operation of parallel pathogenic mechanisms. Future research involving genomics, epigenomics, deep sequencing and non-coding regulatory elements holds promise to identify novel diagnostic and therapeutic targets for ALD. There is also a need for adequate animal models to study pathogenic mechanisms at the molecular level and targeted therapy.

The Role of the Cannabinoid System in the Pathogenesis and Treatment of Alcohol Dependence
The lack of satisfactory results of alcohol dependence treatment force us to search for new directions of research.  SR141716 (rimonabant), a CB1 receptor antagonist, significantly lowers voluntary alcohol intake and motivation for its consumption in various experimental studies. Very encouraging results of preclinical studies were not completely confirmed in the clinical studies. However, further clinical studies are still necessary.

 

Interactions With Cannabis Compounds and the Human Endocannabinoid System in the Brain

We have know about the endocannabinoid system since the 60’s but we have only begun to scratch the surface of what our system is capable of.  This of course include the interaction with compounds found in the cannabis plant.  Below are studies that deal with the interaction of cannabis compounds and our endocannabinoid system in our brain.  Please feel free to share and spread the truth ~ Cherry Gurl

Multiple Functions of Endocannabinoid Signaling in the Brain 2012
Despite being regarded as a hippie science for decades, cannabinoid research has finally found its well-deserved position in mainstream neuroscience. A series of groundbreaking discoveries revealed that endocannabinoid molecules are as widespread and important as conventional neurotransmitters such as glutamate or GABA, yet they act in profoundly unconventional ways. We aim to illustrate how uncovering the molecular, anatomical, and physiological characteristics of endocannabinoid signaling has revealed new mechanistic insights into several fundamental phenomena in synaptic physiology.

Clinical Efficacy and Effectiveness of Sativex(®), A Combined Cannabinoid Medicine, in Multiple Sclerosis-Related Spasticity 2012
Results from randomized, controlled trials have reported a reduction in the severity of symptoms associated with spasticity, leading to a better ability to perform daily activities and an improved perception of patients and their carers regarding functional status. These are highly encouraging findings that provide some much needed optimism for the treatment of this disabling and often painful symptom of MS.

Cannabidiol Exerts Anti-Convulsant Effects in Animal Models of Temporal Lobe and Partial Seizures 2012
We have recently shown that the phytocannabinoid cannabidiol (CBD) reduces seizure severity and lethality in the well-established in vivo model of pentylenetetrazole-induced generalised seizures… this evidence strongly supports CBD as a therapeutic candidate for a diverse range of human epilepsies.

The Cannabinoid Receptor-2 is Involved in Allergic Inflammation 2012
These results clearly demonstrate that CB2 and its endogenous ligands participate not only in the acute, edematous phase of allergic dermatitis, but also in the chronic irreversible acanthosis reaction.

The Direct Pro-Fibrotic and Indirect Immune Anti-Fibrotic Balance of Blocking the Cannabinoid CB2 Receptor 2012
Naïve CB2(-/-) mice had significantly decreased T-cell subsets. (II) Adoptive transfer of CB2(-/-) lymphocytes led to decreased fibrosis in the irradiated WT recipient as compared to animals receiving WT lymphocytes. Moreover, necro-inflammation also tended to decrease. (III) In-vitro, a CB2-antagonist directly increased human HSCs activation and increased apoptosis, decreased proliferation of mice/ human T-cells (healthy/ fibrotic) and their phagocytosis. Conclusions: CB2(-/-) lymphocytes exert an anti-fibrotic activity while lack of CB2-receptor in HSCs promotes fibrosis. These findings broaden our understanding of cannabinoid signaling in hepatic fibrosis beyond their activity solely in HSCs.

Therapeutic Use of Cannabis 2012
Evidence on the therapeutic use of cannabis suggests it may produce improvements in quality of life, which has led to increased use among people with life-limiting illnesses. The cannabis used is usually obtained illegally, which can have consequences for both those who use it and nurses who provide treatment in the community.

Endocannabinoids Regulate Growth and Survival of Human Eccrine Sweat Gland-Derived Epithelial Cells 2012
The endocannabinoids selectively activated the mitogen-activated protein kinase signaling pathway. Finally, other elements of the ECS (i.e., enzymes involved in the synthesis and degradation of endocannabinoids) were also identified on NCL-SG3 cells. These results collectively suggest that cannabinoids exert a profound regulatory role in the biology of the appendage. Therefore, from a therapeutic point of view, upregulation of endocannabinoid levels might help to manage certain sweat gland-derived disorders (e.g., tumors) characterized by unwanted growth.Journal of Investigative Dermatology advance online publication.

 

It Is Time To Start Looking At Cannabis Differently

We all get involved with the community for different reasons.  We watch a loved one suffer through horrific pain, see injustice done to another, are a victim of the system or just realize that the harm and cost done to our nation is not worth it.  Whether it is from personal strife or in memory of a loved one we all feel the passion.  It is sometimes unfortunate that it takes a tragic event for people to become aware and get involved.  Our hope is that we can prevent tragedies while still making people aware of all the damage done by the War on Drugs.

Some activists like Jack Herer died before he was able to see the results of his work.  Although they live on in the community isn’t it sad that even with today’s vast knowledge of the medical value possessed by cannabis compounds some patients are still treated like criminals?  Some patients die with the label of a criminal even though their only crime was using a plant when they were at their weakest.

This past week in Oakland, CA we witnessed the federal government yet again demonstrate its over-reaching intimidation tactics against a well known cannabis activist  Richard Lee.  Mr Lee bankrolled Prop 19, owned Blue Sky dispensary as well as industry trade school Oaksterdam University.  Federal agents raided those locations as well as Mr. Lee’s personal residence on Monday.

Backlash and outrage from the city as well as the community were immediate.  Protesters, blogs, news outlets as well as city officials spoke out against the U.S. Attorney General Melinda Haag’s office and other federal agents condemning their actions.  One message seemed to be that although federal law may consider cannabis illegal it’s legal for medical use in California, so stay out of state and city business.  Supervisor David Campos showed support saying “San Francisco stands firm against the federal government on the issue of medical cannabis”.  Fellow Supervisor Christina Olague called the federal threats to dispensary landlords to either evict the dispensaries or face legal action “absurd” and criticized the “ignorance coming out of Washington right now.”

The cannabis community in California and across the nation are once more betrayed by the current administration.  Yet again federal agents are attacking Californians, who for the past 15 years, have approved of cannabis for medical use.  In 2011 we saw several large scale raids carried out against our own citizens.  They have nothing left but to go after citizens for obscure tax laws and threaten any land owner with forfeiture of property if they lease to a legally operated dispensary.  These kinds of stories surely can’t be the United States of America who’s very objective is to protect its citizens from such types of theft?

If a dispensary or other cannabis industry related business is in complete compliance with state, county and city regulations and is actually a benefit to the community why would the federal government feel the need to stomp all over our home bringing terror into the community?  Why do they feel the need to aggressively barge in with their intimidation tactics and leave destruction in their path?  Why must patients who are otherwise law abiding citizens be treated in the same manner as terrorists or drug cartel members?  If Californians, the people who actually have to live with any repercussions of legalizing cannabis approve why then can’t the federal agents respect that and at the very least give some dignity back to the patients when dealing with them?

After presidential promises and memo reassurances proved to be completely empty many feel lied to and betrayed and rightfully so.  People further are disrespected when the President and his administration continue to address the issue in a laughing manner as if it is a bunch of frat boys asking the question.  They seem to forget the single mother cancer patient who must choose between keeping custody of her children and relieving pain and other side effects.  They forget the families who have lost loved ones to police incompetence in their endless fight in the War on Drugs.  Or the millions of people who have been directly effected and the whole nation who ends up paying for it.

Trillions of dollars have been wasted.  Schools are in disrepair, cities are going bankrupt, crime is going up and yet our priorities are going after patients.  It is time to demand an end to this costly war!  50,000 Mexicans have died, some violently, all in the name of the War on Drugs.  Top South American leaders see it is time for a different approach  and have already started looking for alternatives.  Meanwhile our leaders continue their archaic thinking taking a hardened stance against legalization or decriminalization.

With the economy on life support, people in desperate need of jobs and the government spending an obscene amount of tax-payer money on prohibition it is time to start looking at cannabis differently.  Cannabis is one of America’s biggest cash crop and California’s largest cash crop.  It can be regulated and taxed in the same manner as alcohol which would also address the restrictions for minors.  By responsibly regulating cannabis, communities across the nation can benefit.

After the events that took place this week it is obvious that the time is now to speak up.  We should not tolerate these attacks on citizens, on patients, on our loved ones.  We should not wait for a tragic event to strike us we should get involved now and stop these aggressive tactics from our own government.  Write, email or call your representative and urge them to demand a stop to these attacks.  Call the White house and let your voice be heard.    How far are we willing to let them intrude into our communities?

Cannabis and Teens

Since 1975 the “Monitoring the Future” study has recorded the self-reported use of various substances by middle and high school students. Each year it reveals what is really going on with teen drug use.  In 2011 47,000 teens participated with interesting results. Although many, including the US Drug Czar, took the findings as negative and just one more way to attack cannabis use what it revealed was more proof that teens just like most of us want to do what is best for our bodies.

Many Americans today have tried or use cannabis with no adverse side effects.  During the 90s there was a huge push with D.A.R.E. and other programs that educated school children on all dangers of drugs.  With the population becoming more educated on the actual dangers associated with cigarettes, alcohol and other harmful substances we have seen a shift in use.  People including teens  have also realized the real harms and benefits of cannabis as well.

With this realization people have turned to cannabis with its relatively mild side effects and no lasting damage or threat of death.  Data backs up that use of harmful substances such as cocaine, steroids and heroin have steadily fallen down almost 50% from peak.  Alcohol and tobacco use is down 50% as well actually reaching historic lows.  It would seem that the population of teens have weighed out the dangers and chosen for themselves.

Cannabis use by contrast in the last four years has increased but not noticeably.  Some wonder then why many saw this report as a call to action against cannabis.    Some blamed the medical use movement for not only exposure but access as well.  This argument does not entirely hold up.  Medical marijuana was in the mainstream media and nation-wide topic in 1996 when CA first tried to legalize for patients.  Access for minors in states that have legalized has been restricted and taken crime off the streets.

In 2011 it was reported that 6.6% reported consuming cannabis daily which is greater than previously reported.   The attitude towards cannabis by teens as a whole has also changed with about 45% of them viewing cannabis as harmful.  That is a huge difference considering in the early 90s it was at 80%.  One caveat is that during the time from the early 90s and throughout most of 2000 teen use of cannabis also fell.

Anyone who lives in the real world will attest that you can only shield your children for so long before you have to let go and let them make their own choices.  When it comes to that point all the training that they have received will guide them.  Teens will always party and always break the rules.  We will never live in a society where there is not a teenage party going on somewhere.  While I don’t support teen use of cannabis, when weighing out the harms against use of alcohol and other harmful substances I would rather see teens choose a natural plant that does not cause death.

There of course are risks with using cannabis not only from using the drug but also the consequential side effects and one’s actions.  The earlier in one’s life cannabis is used the more potential there is for risks.  With that, when weighing out the cons, the potential risks of using cannabis is far less severe than many other substances including prescriptions.

While Drug Czar Gil Kerlikowske and other national media look negatively at the study others walk away with a sense of pride that our nation’s youth are choosing more wisely.  Today more people, including teens, perceive cannabis to be less harmful than alcohol and tobacco.  Someday our leaders will see the light and come to the same conclusion as the rest of us.  The War on Drugs has made cannabis an evil that is not neccessary.

The Human Prenatal Endocannabinoid System

Since the discovery of the human endocannabinoid system science has been busy trying to unlock the mysteries of this complex system.  Science has uncovered many interesting features of this system.  This includes the presence of this multi-function system in fetuses.   Below you will see studies on how science has uncovered in-dept knowledge of the endocannabinoid system in pre and post natal subjects.  I encourage all to do their own research and please feel free to share the TRUTH ~ Cherry Girl

Multiple Roles For the Endocannabinoid System During the Earliest Stages Of Life: Pre- and Postnatal Development
The endocannabinoid system, including its receptors (CB(1) and CB(2)), endogenous ligands (‘endocannabinoids’), synthesising and degrading enzymes, as well as transporter molecules, has been detected from the earliest stages of embryonic development and throughout pre- and postnatal development.  Multiple roles for the endocannabinoid system during the earliest stages of life: pre- and postnatal development…the endocannabinoid system appears to play an essential role for development and survival… the endocannabinoid system plays several key roles in pre- and postnatal development. Future studies should further clarify the mechanisms involved… in order to design strategies for the treatment of conditions such as infertility, mental retardation and failure-to-thrive.

The Endocannabinoid-CB Receptor System: Importance For Development and In Pediatric Disease
The endocannabinoid-CB receptor system: Importance for development and in pediatric disease… it is suggested that children may respond positively to medicinal applications of cannabinoids without undesirable central effects. Excellent clinical results have previously been reported in pediatric oncology and in case studies of children with severe neurological disease or brain trauma. We suggest cannabinoid treatment for children or young adults with cystic fibrosis in order to achieve an improvement of their health condition including improved food intake and reduced inflammatory exacerbations.

On the Application of Cannabis In Paediatrics and Epileptology
An initial report on the therapeutic application of delta 9-THC (THC) (Dronabinol, Marinol) in 8 children resp. adolescents suffering from the following conditions, is given: neurodegenerative disease, mitochondriopathy, posthypoxic state, epilepsy, posttraumatic reaction. THC effected reduced spasticity, improved dystonia, increased initiative, increased interest in the surroundings, and anticonvulsive action…possibility that THC-induced effects on ion channels and transmitters may explain its therapeutic activity seen in epileptic patients.

The Endocannabinoid-CB(1) Receptor System In Pre- and Postnatal Life
The endocannabinoid-CB(1) receptor system in pre- and postnatal life.. CB(1) receptors display a transient presence in white matter areas of the pre- and postnatal nervous system, suggesting a role for CB(1) receptors in brain development…Further observations suggest that children may be less prone to psychoactive side effects of Delta(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol or endocannabinoids than adults. The medical implications of these novel developments are far reaching and suggest a promising future for cannabinoids in pediatric medicine for conditions including “non-organic failure-to-thrive” and cystic fibrosis.

Endocannabinoids and Food Intake: Newborn Suckling and Appetite Regulation In Adulthood
The appetite-stimulating effects of the cannabis plant (Cannabis sativa) have been known since ancient times, and appear to be effected through the incentive and rewarding properties of foods. Investigations into the biological basis of the multiple effects of cannabis have yielded important breakthroughs in recent years… exciting progress in the understanding of how the endocannabinoid CB receptor systems influence appetite and body weight is stimulating the development of therapeutic orexigenic and anorectic agents. Furthermore, the role of cannabinoid CB1 receptor activation for milk suckling in newborns may open new doors toward understanding nonorganic failure-to-thrive in infants, who display growth failure without known organic cause.

Ontogenetic Development of Cannabinoid Receptor Expression and Signal Transduction Functionality in the Human Brain
Previous evidence suggests that the endogenous cannabinoid system emerges relatively early during brain development in the rat. However, the pre- and postnatal pattern of appearance of CB1 cannabinoid receptors in humans has not been analysed in detail.   This early pattern of expression of functionally active cannabinoid receptors, along with the transient and atypical localization of these proteins in white matter areas during the prenatal stages, suggest an specific role of the endocannabinoid system in the events related to human neural development.

 

Individualized Treatments: Key To Cannabis’ Success

With so many new scientific discoveries published for the world to see many patients are now gaining a better understanding of how cannabis actually helps them.  Millions of patients have found relief in cannabis for a wide range of afflictions with millions more that have found relaxation.  Cannabis has been used for medicinal, religious and recreation purposes for thousands of years.  But it wasn’t until the 60s when the endocannabinoid system was discovered that we really began to understand the effects.  In 2011 the genetics of the cannabis plant was mapped with that we found that it was not just a plant but a complex world filled with compounds that have many applications.

Patients now have the option of learning what compounds exist in the cannabis plant and how that can help them personally.  Currently there are companies one in particular, GW Pharmaceuticalsthat is seeking FDA approval of a new drug that contains actual cannabinoids, not synthetic, which is currently approved and on the market.  Their mouth spray contains a blend of cannabinoids that they have found to commonly bring relief.

The problem is now that patients are armed with more in-dept information of not only their illness but of cannabis and its compounds they are no longer happy with a “one size fits all” treatment.  Why and how cannabis interacts with our system is becoming more widely known.  With this comes the knowledge that when using cannabis the key to its success is using the right mix of compounds.  Many studies point to the fact that you can not just isolate THC or just CBD but  that its the correct balance of multiple compounds that achieves the desired effect.  This is important to keep in mind when researching your ailment.  Looking for strains that match up with your needs can be very tricky so it is recommended that you seek help when undertaking this.

This is just one more reason why legalization is important.  In states that have legalized medical use of cannabis, dispensaries have flourished.  This allows first-time patients to be guided through the process with experienced patients and experts.  This also allows for supervision of a professional doctor instead of just yourself.  Dispensaries offer a wide array of strain choices within sativa, indica and hybrid varieties.  Professionals also help with choosing the right delivery method for you.

Cannabis use has come a long way since the casual days of the 60s.  Today patients are faced with many choices from natural buds,concentrates, tinctures, edibles and more.  In the states that have passed medical use laws patients standards have been raised.  Gone are the days when people were satisfied with whatever the guy on the corner had that day, no questions asked.  Today patients can inquire about anything from if a bud is organic to what the percentage of THC, CBD or CBN a product contains.

Many dispensaries are now testing their products to not only raise industry standards but to educate patients and promote their best buds.  In today’s market we see dispensaries competing for business giving patients the best selection.  Patients are becoming more educated on the differences between not only the strains but the major compound contents.  With the database of knowledge on individual strains and their compounds becoming not only ever increasing but more accessible it is only a matter of time before we have a better grasp to really start helping patients.

One of the largest shortfalls of today’s medical community is individualized care.  Many times patients are quickly shuffled through their appointment with their doctor trying out different therapies that have worked for other patients.  We do not have the availability of affordable technology to scan or sequence every patients illness or cancer.  Someday we will have wide-spread use of technology that allows doctors to give patients exactly what their bodies need.  Gone will be the days when doctors guess if a medication will work or kill you.  We know today that the technology exists to DNA sequence a cancerous tumor.  We already know that if we have the right combination of cannabis compounds it can shrink a tumor.  Think of all the loved ones that we could save with the right individualized care.

Today’s medications can cause many side effects including respiratory failure, liver damage and even death.  Many times patients are left with the option of doctors guessing which medication will be most helpful with the least damage and many times are prescribed more medication later on to combat damaged caused by previous treatments.  Cannabis has been praised for its forgiving window for patients in regards to damage from side effects.  Common knowledge of no reported overdoses or deaths from cannabis is another appealing factor.  Many have discovered that the benefits of cannabis outweigh the non-lethal side effects and have stopped taking all other medications.

With patients today educated on not only their illness but the available treatment options it is no wonder that they no longer want to accept only what the industry is willing to provide.  Many have taken their health into their own hands.  We have discovered how vital individualized care is when dealing with cannabis and hopefully have sparked interest into other avenues where this can be applied.  It is no longer in the best interest of the nation to rely so heavily on the current industries but instead look for not only natural options but ones that will not do harm.  We can look to the future for the technologies that can one day save us but for today we need to keep our option of being able to choose our own strain combination for ourselves until we all can have individualized care.  To do this we must continue in our fight for legalization.

Dear Mr. President

I know this year is a very important year for you.  It is just as important for millions of Americans across the nation.  I write to ask you a question.  In an election year that many feel is vital we would like to know why the issue of cannabis has not been properly discussed?  I have read the releases from the administration but it fails to properly address our concerns.  The issue has been ignored at many venues where it was the leading question.

After 40 years of this War on Drugs where have we gotten and was it worth it?  In this economy many people are hurting and everyone is looking for ways to save money.  The War on Drugs cost taxpayers billions of dollars each year and is responsible for many tragic stories.

Not only has it cost us money but it has cost us as a society as well.  Millions of Americans have been shuffled through the judicial system destroying their lives many for simple possession.  This problem has also exposed racial divides and furthered the tension in the country.  People have lost faith in law enforcement in many cities.  In Mexico over 50,000 have died in the last 6 years directly resulting from this war.  The Cartels are getting richer and the demand is still there.

There is a sizable and growing group of supporters across the nation.  75% support medical use and the number for legalization for adults over 21 is rapidly growing.  In this economy where many are downsizing the cannabis industry is booming.  The states that have legalized cannabis have seen a sharp increase in revenue both in taxes and fees as well as residual income for local communities.  When properly regulated and implemented we have seen excellent examples shine through.

Consumers no longer want to go to the street corner dealer but instead enjoy the safety and security of dispensaries.  There patients can find natural, organic strain choices with professional help and options in consumption.  They can feel confident that they are paying taxes and contributing towards the community instead of the black market.

With legalization comes regulation which assists in restricting access to minors.  Today minors are restricted from buying and accessing alcohol on their own due to strict regulations.  We have seen the devastating effects that alcohol prohibition caused.  Since its repeal we have also seen the effects that it has had on this nation.  From responsible use to fatalities from car accidents, consumption and domestic violence alcohol has been responsible.  Today alcohol is advertised during major sporting events, radio, TV, movies billboards and more exposing children at a young age.

There is too much proof both in scientific studies and in testimonies to deny the many benefits of cannabis.   With the knowledge we have gained so far patients of all kinds have found relief with cannabis.  We have also seen miraculous cases such as Cash Hyde overcome childhood cancer.  We have come much further than smoking on a Friday night but rather uncovered just the surface of what looks to be exciting and promising discoveries.

With all these factors in mind our community is wondering why our our President and candidates, who are vying for the highest power in the country for the next four years  and who directly effect this issue, continue to ignore us?  We want to know why an issue that directly effects millions and indirectly effects us all would not be considered?

We are looking for a leader who is willing to stand up to the opposition and show people that legalization can be done responsibly with regulations and state approval.  We need a leader who will take us seriously and address our needs.  We are looking for that leader this year and it is for that reason it needs to be addressed.  Millions of voters are waiting it is time to address cannabis.

We Can Not Afford To Continue The War On Drugs

The Vice President visited with South American leaders but continued the hardened stance against drug legalization despite opposing opinions from the other side.  While the US government, in their fight against drugs, has proven its disregard for its own citizens they have also shown that they are willing to sacrifice over 50,000 Mexicans as well as thousands in other Latin countries, murdered, some decapitated and dumped in public streets.  By continuing this costly, bloody and utterly disastrous War on Drugs they have proven that they will stop at nothing to continue their agenda.    Over 40 years of continual war on drugs has cost this country dearly and many ask is it really worth it?

With all that is going on in the country today it’s no wonder that people start to ignore some issues and continue on with more pressing matters. But when taking a further look into the cannabis issue it has more to do with every day life than what appears at face value.  There are multiple layers to this complex issue.  Cannabis and the War on Drugs impacts the economy, citizen’s rights, society, families, the individual user and much more.  It impacts all of us in one way or another many without us realizing it.

With the economy in the shape that it’s currently in, budget cuts rampant, layoffs, department downsizing; cities across the country are having to prioritize and make cuts often deciding which cases are the most important and letting others slide including violent crimes.  With cuts to law enforcement cities across the nation see crimes rates rise and the value decrease which impacts us all.  Each year the government spends billions fighting the War on Drugs. That money could instead be used more wisely.  One wonders then with these limited resources why cannabis, a non lethal plant,  continues to top their priorities list despite saying the administration would do otherwise?

We have spent trillions of dollars fighting this War on Drugs and what we have ended with is a broken country both financially and socially.  The government has criminalized a natural plant and taken a hardened stance against it despite the growing support nationally for legalization especially for medical reasons.  The government has continued to deny any benefits of cannabis and still stands by its classification of it as a scheduled 1 substance along side such hard drugs as heroin and deemed harsher than cocaine.  The government needs to wake up and realize that this war is not worth the cost and needs to end.   That will happen when we come together and make our voices heard.  We need to take this issue to the forefront and make people, make the president, address it.

In the last three years we saw more attacks from the federal government during the Obama administration than those of Presidents Bush and Clinton.  We saw federal raids on legitimate patients and their caregivers.  We saw taxpayer’s money wasted fueling this war on citizens.  We saw the federal government trample all over our rights in its search for criminals, millions who’s only crime was simple possession.

The laws that were passed soon after the 9/11 attacks, that were thought to be used only for the protection against terrorists attacks, have continuously been used in the War against Drugs and American citizens.  The laws have been used more in the search for drugs than for terrorists.  We need to stand up for our rights and demand that use of a plant should not constitute giving up our constitutional rights.

Currently schools across the country are in need of funding and money spent on the War on Drugs could instead go to make our schools excellent again.  By having smart regulations, correct zoning in cities and responsible use, children will not be effected in the manner everyone fears.  Instead of an underground network of criminals you would have a respected cannabis community that is not selling your children drugs. 

The argument for denying legalization for the sake of children may at face value have merit but when looking closer is ridiculous.  Parents need to take a leading role in teaching their children about cannabis, responsibility for choices and the pros and cons of drug use.  This issue of children’s use of cannabis or not is not a government decision but a parental one.  Parents play a huge role in their child’s influences, view towards drugs, access and more.  They should be the one making that decision to restrict cannabis or drug use.

By keeping cannabis illegal you keep it from being regulated which means that the product is out there with no one saying who can and can not have it.  Which also means that the person selling it doesn’t necessarily care how old your kid is when they try to buy pot only if they have the right amount of cash.  Alcohol by contrast, which consequently can be fatal especially to children and teens, is legal, regulated and not readily accessible to children.  Those worried about dispensary signs keep in mind that alcohol is advertised during national sporting events, local radio, TV, movies, billboards and more, giving children much more exposure.

In states across the US there is pending legislation for cannabis use with some aiming to take control and address the obvious problems caused by the War on Drugs.  The state of Washington has a great set up already in place for alcohol which would nicely accommodate the cannabis industry as well.  The citizens have gotten the necessary signatures validated for a legalization initiative for adults 21 and older to consume cannabis to appear before the voters in the November 2012 ballots. This has a great potential for a positive financial impact on the local and state economy allowing for more income, a much-needed relief especially in these times.

With all the facts stacking up against the War on Drugs and the hardened stance against legalization you have to ask yourself why are we continuing this costly war?  We need to address this issue and demand and end to this war.  We must urge our representatives to support rescheduling cannabis and repealing the devastating effects of prohibition.  The fight for legalization has been a long one but with quick action we can take hold of this opportunity and finally achieve our goals.

This guy can afford the War on Drugs (head of Sinola cartel)

The Miraculous Human CB1 Receptor

For over 50 years we have known of the human endocannabinoid system and with that the discovery of the CB1 receptor.  The CB1 receptor is found in the brain and is involved in a lot of functions.  Below you will see studies on the CB1 receptor and how they function within the body and with cannabis.  I encourage all to do their own research and seek out the truth.  Please feel free to share ~ Cherry Girl

Mitochondrial CB(1) Receptors Regulate Neuronal Energy Metabolism
The mammalian brain is one of the organs with the highest energy demands, and mitochondria are key determinants of its functions. Thus, mtCB(1) receptors directly modulate neuronal energy metabolism, revealing a new mechanism of action of G protein-coupled receptor signaling in the brain.

Cannabinoid Receptor 1 Trafficking and the Role of the Intracellular Pool: Implications For Therapeutics
Cannabinoid Receptor 1 (CB(1)), an abundant G-protein coupled receptor in the CNS, is currently of significant interest as a therapeutic target.  These findings have significant implications for the interpretation of CB(1) biochemical studies and the design and application of cannabinoid therapeutics.

Cannabinoid Receptor Trafficking In Peripheral Cells Is Dynamically Regulated By A Binary Biochemical Switch 2012
The cannabinoid G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) CB(1) and CB(2) are expressed in different peripheral cells.  This study describes, for the first time, the dynamic nature of CB receptor trafficking in the context of a biochemical switch, which may have implications for studies on the cell-type specific effects of cannabinoids and our understanding of the regulation of CB receptor cell surface expression.

Cannabis And The Human Immune System

For over 50 years science has been trying to unravel the questions that surround our endocannabinoid system.  Science has discovered many exciting breakthroughs including how cannabis, our endocannabinoid stem and our immune system work together.  below you will see studies on how this has been studied.  Please feel free to do your own research, seek out and share the truth ~ Cherry Girl

Immune Control By Endocannabinoids – New Mechanisms of Neuroprotection?
The endocannabinoid system consists of cannabinoid receptors, their endogenous ligands and enzymes for synthesis and degradation of endocannabinoids and represents a local messenger system within and between the nervous and immune system. Apparently, the endocannabinoid system is involved in immune control and neuroprotection.

Cannabinoid Treatment Suppresses the T-helper Cell-Polarizing Function of Mouse Dendritic Cells Stimulated With Legionella Pneumophila Infection
“In conclusion, our results show that a major cellular target of THC-induced immune suppression of Th1 immunity is the dendritic cell and that the drug attenuates polarizing function… THC… might be of use in the treatment of chronic inflammatory diseases, such as celiac disease and Crohn’s disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and systemic lupus, and therefore might be in the class of anti-inflammatory drugs recognized to interfere with earlier stages of immunity by suppressing DC activation.

Role of Cannabinoid Receptors In Delta-9-Tetrahydrocannabinol Suppression of IL-12p40 In Mouse Bone Marrow-Derived Dendritic Cells Infected With Legionella Pneumophila
These results suggest that THC-induced suppression of serum IL-12 is partly due to a suppression of IL-12 production by dendritic cells and that G(i) signaling and cannabinoid receptors, but not TRPV1, are involved in this suppressive effect.

The Endogenous Cannabinoid 2-Arachidonoyl Glycerol As In Vivo Chemoattractant For Dendritic Cells and Adjuvant For Th1 Response To A Soluble Protein
The decision-making mechanisms that determine the choice of the appropriate effector immune response to a microbial challenge are poorly understood. The endocannabinoid 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG), injected intradermally in mice together with a soluble protein and a T helper-2 (Th2) priming Toll-like receptors (TLRs) agonist during primary immunization, shifts the memory response to the Th1 type. As 2-AG may be induced in tissues by various stimuli at concentrations similar to that used in our study, this evidence might be of a wide-ranging pathophysiological relevance.

Presence and Regulation of the Endocannabinoid System In Human Dendritic Cells
Cannabinoid receptors and their endogenous ligands, the endocannabinoids, have been detected in several blood immune cells, including monocytes/macrophages, basophils and lymphocytes. However, their presence in dendritic cells, which play a key role in the initiation and development of the immune response, has never been investigated.  These findings demonstrate for the first time that the endogenous cannabinoid system is present in human dendritic cells and can be regulated by cell activation.

The Endocannabinoid System: Mechanisms Behind Metabolic Homeostasis and Imbalance
The endocannabinoid system: mechanisms behind metabolic homeostasis and imbalance…EC agonists and receptors have been identified in the brain, liver, and peripheral adipose tissue, and the EC system is known to affect metabolism in these areas and others through neuromodulatory signals. Meal size, body weight, and numerous metabolic factors such as triglyceride and cholesterol levels, insulin resistance, and glucose intolerance can be affected via the EC system.

Delta 9-Tetrahydrocannabinol Modulates Antigen Processing By Macrophages
THC differentially modulates the capacity of macrophages to process antigens that is necessary for the activation of CD4+ T cells… delta 9-Tetrahydrocannabinol modulates antigen processing by macrophages.