Cannabis, which has long been shown to reduce pain and nausea in cancer patients as well as improving quality of life while in radiation treatment, may be even more promising as a cancer-fighting agent against some of the most sinister and deadly forms of the disease.
Through years of study, two doctors from the California Pacific Medical Center research institute have made progress in their field of interest with progressively positive results. The researchers are focusing on the non-psychotropic element in Cannabis, known as cannabidiol or CBD, interacts with cancer. Though the similar cannabinoid THC (delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol) has shown some anti-cancerous properties in relation to tumors, the CBD cannabinoid seems to be able to interact and possibly halt the spread of cancerous cells throughout the body.
Due to the study of metastatic cancer cells – not just standard cancer cells, but those responsible for aggressively spreading the disease throughout the body. He found the vast majority tended to express high levels of ID-1, a natural protein that is highly involved in the embryonic development of humans.
“The ID-1 protein is important in embryonic development, after which it essentially turns off and stays off. But when Desprez manipulated cells in the lab to artificially maintain a high level of ID-1 to see if he could stop the secretion of milk, he discovered that these cells began to look and act like cancer cells.”
This link between the ID-1 protein and forms of cancer may help to focus efforts on halting the spread of the disease within the body. Based on the idea that the ID-1 protein itself is a high motivator for cancerous cells to not stay localized to an area in the body, but spread and infect other cells and ares through a process called metastasizing. If the CBD cannabinoid can be used as a tool to slow the spread of cancerous cells through the body, it could be a drastic step in the fight against cancer.