Cannabis Less Harmful Than Current Drug Therapies?

Many when faced with a serious illness fight for their life but ironically are prescribed medications that in fact not only cause harm but also are capable of taking their life.  Many prescription side effects are quite lengthy.  Those that are on prescriptions long-term end up requiring even more medication down the line to combat the side effects from the first drug.  With all that in mind patients are looking for a safer alternative solution.

From cancers to anxiety many prescribed therapies are not only dangerous but can cause death.  Chemotherapy has come a long way from the early days but it is still a drug that ravages the body.  By contrast research has shown that cannabinoid therapies induce programmed cell death in cancerous cells.  Cannabinoids as is widely known are praised for their ability to alleviate without any reported deaths throughout its historic, several thousand year use.

Although the official stance from the government is that cannabis has no accepted medical value science tells us otherwise.  Below you will see a study that weighs the harm of accepted drug therapies such as opioids.  As always I encourage all to do their own research and please feel free to share ~ Cherry Girl

Prescribing Cannabis For Harm Reduction 2012
Neuropathic pain affects between 5% and 10% of the US population and can be refractory to treatment. Opioids may be recommended as a second-line pharmacotherapy but have risks including overdose and death. Cannabis has been shown to be effective for treating nerve pain without the risk of fatal poisoning. The author suggests that physicians who treat neuropathic pain with opioids should evaluate their patients for a trial of cannabis and prescribe it when appropriate prior to using opioids. This harm reduction strategy may reduce the morbidity and mortality rates associated with prescription pain medications.

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Newly Released Studies Show Protection and Regeneration of Brain Cells with Cannabis Therapies

There are over 1.7 million cases of severe brain injury that are reported each year.  These injuries can be life altering for many but thanks to the hard work from the science and medical communities we are learning more about new treatment options.  Cannabis has been discovered to help with cell regeneration and repair in the brain.  Below you will see newly published studies where  cannabis has been applied to help with brain injuries. Truly exciting!!   As always I encourage all to do their own research as well and please feel free to share ~ Cherry Girl

Early Survival of Comatose Patients After Severe Traumatic Brain Injury With the Dual Cannabinoid CB1/CB2 Receptor Agonist KN38-7271
Despite many drug trials, no substance has yet been identified that improves the outcome of severe head injury. The dual cannabinoid CB1/CB2 receptor agonist KN38-7271 mediates potent neuroprotection in animal models. We describe here the first randomized, double-blind, prospective, placebo-controlled clinical phase IIa proof-of-concept trial to investigate the safety, pharmacokinetics, and potential efficacy of a cannabinoid receptor agonist in humans.  Conclusions KN38-7271 appeared beneficial in the acute early phase of the comatose patient after a head injury. Its use was safe and well tolerated by patients.

Cannabinoids As Neuroprotective Agents In Traumatic Brain Injury
Cannabinoids of all classes have the ability to protect neurons from a variety of insults that are believed to underlie delayed neuronal death after traumatic brain injury (TBI), including excitotoxicity, calcium influx, free radical formation and neuroinflammation.

Cannabidiol Administration After Hypoxia-Ischemia To Newborn Rats Reduces Long-Term Brain Injury and Restores Neurobehavioral Function 2012
Cannabidiol (CBD) demonstrated short-term neuroprotective effects in the immature brain following hypoxia-ischemia (HI).   In conclusion, CBD administration after HI injury to newborn rats led to long-lasting neuroprotection, with the overall effect of promoting greater functional rather than histological recovery.

Cannabidiol Reduces Brain Damage and Improves Functional Recovery After Acute Hypoxia-Ischemia In Newborn Pigs 2011
Newborn piglets exposed to acute hypoxia-ischemia (HI) received i.v. cannabidiol (HI + CBD) or vehicle (HI + VEH). In HI + VEH, 72 h post-HI brain activity as assessed by amplitude-integrated EEG (aEEG) had only recovered to 42 ± 9% of baseline, near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) parameters remained lower than normal, and neurobehavioral performance was abnormal (27.8 ± 2.3 points, normal 36).   In conclusion, post-HI administration of CBD protects neurons and astrocytes, leading to histological, functional, biochemical, and neurobehavioral improvements.
 

Cannabis Has Cancer In The Cross-Hairs. Utilizing The Endocannabinoid System To Kill Cancer

It seems that these days the word cancer is everywhere.  From billboards encouraging donations to charities to news headlines to loved one effected by cancer most people are familiar.  There are more than 200 different types of cancer that can develop in over 60 different organs in the body.  Current therapies include poisoning the body in hopes that it will also kill the cancer.  Cannabis is used to help counteract the side effects of these therapies.  However new research points to cannabis as the compounds that can actually cause cancer cell death, essentially curing cancer.  There are countless studies that have been published showing the benefits of using the endocannabinoid system to target cancer cells with cannabinoids.  From that research we have found where using the endocannabinoid system has proven vital in fighting cancer.  Below you will see several studies that show how using the endocannabinoid system can be used in targeting cancer.  Please feel free to share and help others see that using cannabis is beyond the smoke.  I encourage all to do their own research as well ~ Cherry Girl

The Endocannabinoid System in Cancer-Potential Therapeutic Target?
Endogenous arachidonic acid metabolites with properties similar to compounds of Cannabis sativa Linnaeus, the so-called endocannabinoids, have effects on various types of cancer.    Remarkably, these effects may be selective for the cancer cells, while normal cells and tissues are spared. Such apparent tumor cell selectivity makes the endocannabinoid system an attractive potential target for cancer therapy.

Targeting the Endocannabinoid System For the Treatment of Cancer–A Practical View
In recent years, considerable interest has been generated by findings that cannabinoids not only have useful palliative effects, but also can affect the viability and invasivity of a variety of different cancer cells.   It is concluded that cannabinoids (or agents modulating the endogenous cannabinoid system) are an attractive target for drug development in the cancer area….

The Endocannabinoid System As A Target For the Development of New Drugs For Cancer Therapy
Studies on the main bioactive components of Cannabis sativa, the cannabinoids, and particularly (THC), led to the discovery of a new endogenous signalling system that controls several physiological and pathological conditions: the endocannabinoid system. Recently, evidence has accumulated indicating that stimulation of cannabinoid receptors by either THC or the endocannabinoids influence the intracellular events controlling the proliferation and apoptosis(cell death) of numerous types of cancer cells, thereby leading to anti-tumour effects both in vitro and in vivo. This evidence is reviewed here and suggests that future anti-cancer therapy might be developed from our knowledge of how the endocannabinoid system controls the growth and metastasis of malignant cells.

Endocannabinoid System Modulation In Cancer Biology and Therapy
Endocannabinoid system modulation in cancer biology and therapy. The discovery of the endocannabinoid system… led to the development of therapeutic agents related to either the stimulation or antagonism of CB1 and CB2 cannabinoid receptors… evidence suggests that agonists of cannabinoid receptors, which share the useful property to discern between tumor cells and their non-transformed counterparts, could represent novel tumor-selective tools to treat cancer in addition to their already exploited use as palliative drugs.

Use of Cannabinoid Receptor Agonists In Cancer Therapy As Palliative and Curative Agents
“Use of cannabinoid receptor agonists in cancer therapy as palliative and curative agents… Cannabinoids (the active components of Cannabis sativa)… development, exploration and use of cannabinoid agonists for cancer therapy, not only as palliative but also as curative drugs.

Changes in the Endocannabinoid System May Give Insight into new and Effective Treatments for Cancer
Marijuana and its derivatives have been used in medicine for centuries… cannabinoids might be effective anti-tumoral agents because of their ability to inhibit the growth of various types of cancer… Evidence suggests that the endocannabinoid system may be dysregulated in a number of cancers… the endocannabinoid system exerts a myriad of effects on tumor cell growth, progression, angiogenesis, and migration. With a notable few exceptions, targeting the endocannabinoid system with agents that activate cannabinoid receptors or increase the endogenous levels of AEA may prove to have therapeutic benefit in the treatment of various cancers.

Save Your Ass, Smoke Some Grass

When people think of grass, weed, pot or cannabis they think of hippies and parties.  What most people don’t think about is that cannabis is showing real promise, on the molecular level, in fighting cancers.  People of all walks have been touched by cancer.  Most people know of someone, has had a loved one go through it or they themselves have experienced cancer.  It is no wonder then that science and medicine have been working hard to find a cure.  Cannabis research has been taking notice especially for its anti-cancer discoveries.   Over 140,000 new cases were reported for colon and rectal cancers with 51,000 reported deaths.  Below you will see studies where cannabis has been examined in the context of colorectal cancers.  As always please feel free to share and I encourage all to do their own research as well ~ Cherry Girl

Single Nucleotide Change in the Cannabinoid Receptor-1 (CNR1) Gene in Colorectal Cancer Outcome
The cannabinoid receptor-1 (CNR-1) and endogenous agonists of this receptor are present in the central and peripheral nervous systems including the gastrointestinal nervous system.Indeed nontumor paired colorectal tissues showed nucleotide change. A large number of patients with mutation in the CNR1 gene were observed. These preliminary findings highlight the importance of further studies in the use of cannabinoid analogs as receptor ligands to analyze potential therapeutic effects.

Cannabinoid Receptor Activation Induces Apoptosis(programmed cell death) through Tumor Necrosis Factor α–Mediated Ceramide De novo Synthesis in Colon Cancer Cells
We show that the CB1 receptor was mainly expressed in human normal colonic epithelium whereas tumor tissue was strongly positive for the CB2 receptor.  The present study shows that either CB1 or CB2 receptor activation induces apoptosis through ceramide de novo synthesis in colon cancer cells. Our data unveiled, for the first time, that TNF-α acts as a link between cannabinoid receptor activation and ceramide production.

Apoptosis: Programmed Cell Death At A Molecular Level
Balanced apoptosis is crucial in development and homeostasis, and all multicellular organisms have a physiologically programmed continuum of pathways to apoptotic cell death. Further studies of the control at the molecular level of key components and promoters/suppressors of apoptosis may provide better approaches to treatment of autoimmune diseases, malignancies, and neurodegenerative disorders. Many important questions remain regarding the advantages of modifying apoptotic programs in clinical situations.

Cannabis and Brain Disorders: Cannabinoids Targeting the Endocannabinoid System and Receptors As A Means to CURE

Below are studies that show how cannabis affects the central nervous system.  These studies suggest that cannabis can aid in treating brain disorders.  With more research we can prove that marijuana does have medicinal value and can greatly aid or cure many ailments.  These are published medical studies that I encourage you to research and share your findings with everyone.  Spread the truth!
Information gathered by David Worrell edited by Cherry Girl

It is not important that you fully understand all the scientific mumbo-jumbo. What is important, what you need to understand, is that there are “Functional Neuronal CB2 Cannabinoid Receptors in the Central Nervous System”  ~ D.W.

Functional Neuronal CB2 Cannabinoid Receptors in the Central Nervous System
“Cannabinoids are the constituents of the marijuana plant (Cannabis sativa). The recent progress in marijuana-cannabinoid research include the discovery of an endocannabinoid system with specific genes coding for cannabinoid receptors (CBRs) that are activated by smoking marijuana, and that the human body and brain makes its own marijuana-like substances called endocannabinoids that also activate CBRs.”
‎”Commentary: Functional Neuronal CB2 Cannabinoid Receptors in the CNS.
Onaivi ES.  SourceWilliam Paterson University, Wayne NJ and Molecular Neurobiology Branch, National Institute on Drug Abuse, NIH, Baltimore, USA.

Abstract
Cannabinoids are the constituents of the marijuana plant (Cannabis sativa). There are numerous cannabinoids and other natural compounds that have been reported in the cannabis plant. The recent progress in marijuana-cannabinoid research include the discovery of an endocannabinoid system with specific genes coding for cannabinoid receptors (CBRs) that are activated by smoking marijuana, and that the human body and brain makes its own marijuana-like substances called endocannabinoids that also activate CBRs. This new knowledge and progress about cannabinoids and endocannabinoids indicate that a balanced level of endocannabinoids is important for pregnancy and that the breast milk in animals and humans has endocannabinoids for the growth and development of the new born. There are two well characterized cannabinoid receptors termed CB1-Rs and CB2-Rs and these CBRs are perhaps the most abundant G-protein coupled receptors that are expressed at high levels in many regions of the mammalian brain. The expression of CB1-Rs in the brain and periphery and the identification of CB2-Rs in immune cells and during inflammation has been extensively studied and characterized. However, the expression of functional neuronal CB2-Rs in the CNS has been much less well established and characterized in comparison to the expression of abundant brain CB1-Rs and functional neuronal CB2-Rs has ignited debate and controversy. While the issue of the specificity of CB2-R antibodies remains, many recent studies have reported the discovery and functional characterization of functional neuronal CB2-Rs in the CNS beyond neuro-immuno cannabinoid activity.”   http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3137183/?tool=pubmed


Targeting the Endocannabinoid System in Treating Brain Disorders.
“Many studies on cannabinoids indicate important progress for protection against several neurodegenerative disorders.This review highlights recent studies implicating the endocannabinoid system in neuroprotection against different disorders of the CNS.” (Central Nervous System)
‎”Targeting the endocannabinoid system in treating brain disorders.Bahr BA, Karanian DA, Makanji SS, Makriyannis A. SourceDepartment of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT 06269, USA. Bahr@uconn.edu

Abstract
Recent cannabinoid research has a primary focus on developing therapeutics against human diseases. Many studies on Cannabinoids indicate important progress for protection against several Neurodegenerative disorders.  Agonists of cannabinoid receptors activate signalling pathways in the brain that are linked to neuronal repair and cell maintenance, and endogenous ligands can also activate neuroprotective responses. These endocannabinoids are bioactive fatty acid amides and esters that are synthesised in the brain and include arachidonoyl ethanolamide (anandamide) and 2-arachidonoyl glycerol. Endocannabinoids are released in response to pathogenic events, thus representing a potential compensatory repair mechanism. Enhancing this on-demand action of endocannabinoids is a strategy with which to promote endogenous repair signalling. For such enhancement, considerable work has gone into modulating the availability of endocannabinoids by blocking the processes of their deactivation. The targets include the anandamide-hydrolysing enzyme fatty acid amide hydrolase, the carrier-mediated anandamide transport system and 2-arachidonoyl glycerol-deactivating enzyme monoacylglycerol lipase. The activity of endocannabinoids is terminated through transport and degradation and, accordingly, selective inhibitors of these processes effectively exploit the protective nature of cannabinergic responses. This review highlights recent studies implicating the endocannabinoid system in neuroprotection against different disorders of the Central Nervous System.”  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16548785

Cannabinoids: A New Group of Agonists of PPARs
Cannabinoids have been used medicinally for thousands of years. In preclinical studies cannabinoids displayed many of the characteristics of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and seem to be free of unwanted side effects. An increasing number of therapeutic actions of cannabinoids are being reported…
Sun Y, Bennett A.  SourceSchool of Biomedical Sciences, University of Nottingham Medical School, Nottingham NG7 2UH, UK. stxys3@nottingham.ac.uk

Abstract
Cannabinoids have been used medicinally and recreationally for thousands of years and their effects were proposed to occur mainly via activation of the G-protein-coupled receptor CB1/CB2 (cannabinoid receptor 1/2). Discovery of potent synthetic analogs of the natural cannabinoids as clinically useful drugs is the sustained aim of cannabinoid research. This demands that these new compounds be free of the psychotropic effects that connected with the recreational use of cannabinoids. In preclinical studies cannabinoids displayed many of the characteristics of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and it seems to be free of unwanted side effects. An increasing number of therapeutic actions of cannabinoid are being reported that do not appear to be mediated by either CB1 or CB2, and recently nuclear receptor superfamily PPARs (peroxisome-proliferator-activated receptors) have been suggested as the target of certain cannabinoids. This review summarizes the evidence for cannabinoid activation on PPARs and possible associated remedial potentials.”
‎”In summary, there is strong evidence to suggest that some cannabinoids can act on PPARs through either direct or indirect pathways. These discoveries not only broaden the promising usage of cannabinoids as therapeutic agents, but also support PPARs as new targets for some neuroprotective treatment.”  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2220031/?tool=pubmed

Cannabinoid Activation of PPARα; A Novel Neuroprotective Mechanism
“Conclusions and implications:These data demonstrate the potential for a range of cannabinoid compounds, of diverse structures, to activate PPAR alpha and suggest that at least some of the neuroprotective properties of these agents could be mediated by nuclear receptor activation.”
‎”Cannabinoid activation of PPAR alpha; a novel neuroprotective mechanism.
Sun Y, Alexander SP, Garle MJ, Gibson CL, Hewitt K, Murphy SP, Kendall DA, Bennett AJ.
SourceSchool of Biomedical Sciences, University of Nottingham Medical School, Nottingham, UK.

Abstract
BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Although CB(1) receptor activation evokes neuroprotection in response to cannabinoids, some cannabinoids have been reported to be peroxisome proliferator activated receptor (PPAR) ligands, offering an alternative protective mechanism. We have, therefore, investigated the ability of a range of cannabinoids to activate PPAR alpha and for N-oleoylethanolamine (OEA), an endogenous cannabinoid-like compound (ECL), to evoke neuroprotection.

EXPERIMENTAL APPROACH:
Assays of PPAR alpha occupancy and gene transactivation potential were conducted in cell-free and transfected HeLa cell preparations, respectively. In vivo estimates of PPAR alpha activation through fat mobilization and gene transcription were conducted in mice. Neuroprotection in vivo was investigated in wild-type and PPAR alpha gene-disrupted mice.

KEY RESULTS: The ECLs OEA, anandamide, noladin ether and virodhamine were found to bind to the purified PPAR alpha ligand binding domain and to increase PPAR alpha-driven transcriptional activity. The high affinity synthetic CB(1/2) cannabinoid agonist WIN 55212-2 bound to PPAR alpha equipotently with the PPARalpha agonist fenofibrate, and stimulated PPARalpha-mediated gene transcription. The phytocannabinoid delta 9 tetrahydrocannabinol was without effect. OEA and WIN 55212-2 induced lipolysis in vivo, while OEA pre-treatment reduced infarct volume from middle cerebral artery occlusion in wild-type, but not in PPAR alpha-null mice. OEA treatment also led to increased expression of the NFkappa B-inhibitory protein, Ikappa B, in mouse cerebral cortex, while expression of the NFkappa B-regulated protein COX-2 was inhibited. Conclusions and implications:These data demonstrate the potential for a range of cannabinoid compounds, of diverse structures, to activate PPAR alpha and suggest that at least some of the neuroprotective properties of these agents could be mediated by nuclear receptor activation.”

‎”In summary, the data presented here provide strong evidence that selected cannabinoids (WIN 55212-2, OEA, noladin ether and virodhamine) are PPARα agonists, and suggest a novel means by which the multiple effects of cannabinoids, in boththe CNS and periphery, could be brought about. In addition to its well-recognized role in lipid metabolism, PPARα activation showed obvious beneficial effects in ischaemic brain damage, which is likely to be connected with its anti-inflammatory action through the NF–κB pathway. These discoveries not only broaden the potential use of cannabinoids as therapeutic agents, but also support PPARα as a new target for neuroprotectiv treatment.” http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2190030/?tool=pubmed


Cannabinoids and PPARalpha Signalling

“Cannabinoids have been shown to possess anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective properties.This review summarizes the evidence for cannabinoid activation of PPARs and identifies a new intracellular target for cannabinoids as therapeutic agents for neuroprotective treatment.”
‎”Cannabinoids and PPARalpha signalling. Sun Y, Alexander SP, Kendall DA, Bennett AJ. SourceSchool of Biomedical Sciences, University of Nottingham, Nottingham NG7 2UH, UK. stxys3@nottingham.ac.uk

Abstract
Cannabinoids have been shown to possess anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective properties, which were proposed to occur mainly via activation of the G-protein-coupled receptor CB(1) (cannabinoid receptor 1). Recently, certain cannabinoids have been reported to be ligands for members of the nuclear receptor transcription factor superfamily known as PPARs (peroxisome-proliferator-activated receptors). This review summarizes the evidence for cannabinoid activation of PPARs and identifies a new intracellular target for cannabinoids as therapeutic agents for neuroprotective treatment.”
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17073758