Medical Cannabis Roundup

Cannabis Medicinal Studies Update June 2016

5 mins read

There have been various medical studies released recently showing benefits of the cannabis plant. Indeed, Leafly reports that studies done on Cannabis now vastly outnumber those done on other FDA-approved medications.

Indeed, it seems that a new article is coming out almost daily shedding new light on the amazing cannabis plant. From new terpenes like hashishene being discovered, to uncovering that the biggest danger of cannabis is an increased chance of gum disease, you’d be forgiven for missing some of the abundant cannabis news being published every day.

Here at ISMOKE we will endeavour  to bring you as much cannabis news as possible through features, interviews and articles. You can also stay up-to-date with the latest cannabis news headlines from around the world by clicking the ‘Cannabis News’ link in the sidebar.

So, what have we learned about Cannabis over the past month? Here is a great little roundup.

  • Cannabinoids may have paradoxical effects on liver cancer. This is a strange one – researchers at Columbia University in New York found that activation of CB1 receptors could increase cancer development whereas CB2 receptors could decrease it. As different cannabinoids have different affinities to CB1/CB2 receptors, more research is needed to reveal how specific cannabis compounds could treat liver cancer while avoiding those that activate the CB1 receptors. This study was performed on mice, so we are still a while off before any definitive conclusions are drawn.
  • Ethan Russo calls the report on cannabis-induced DNA changes into question. In a recent press release, scientists from the University of Western Australia claimed that cannabis could “alter a person’s DNA structure, causing mutations which can expose them to serious illnesses, and be passed on to their children and several future generations.” Leading Cannabis researcher Dr. Russo argued that points out that the study did no actual clinical testing – it was a review of studies supporting their logic – and gave no detail on important factors such as dosing and length of use.
  • A study found that cannabis did not cause midlife health problems (except slightly higher rates of gum disease). Daily Mail headlines focused exaggerated the dental damage aspects of it (teeth falling out), but it can’t be overlooked that cannabis consumers showed better overall health.
  • Alcoholism and PTSD are associated with fewer CB1 receptors in one area of the brain. Researchers at the VA Medical Center in Detroit uncovered this and published a study last month. THC binds to the CBD1 receptor, and structural changes in the brain’s striatum could be why cannabis appears to have a therapeutic effect on both PTSD and for alcoholism sufferers. Another study that is in early stages (testing on mice), but with promising implications!
  • Long-term cannabis use is associated with altered activity in the brain’s reward processing pathways (US Governmnet Study). This study found that cannabis consumers exhibited higher levels of mesocoricolimbic-reward activity when exposed to cannabis cues than when shown natural reward cues. Harsh conclusions were drawn by researchers about cannabis addiction and its connection to family issues and personal life problems. The reward alternative in the study was a piece of fruit – I dont know about you, but fruit and cannabis are not on par in my brain; of course I’ll take a bud over an apple, unless I’m dying of hunger! Leafly puts it brilliantly:  “Avocados may be my favorite food, but when given the choice between that and cannabis – the plant that provides me stress relief, mood enhancement, nausea relief, creativity, a newfound appetite, and so much more – you can bet your bottom my brain is going to be more excited about that.”

Read the Leafly Medical Roundup for further info.

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