Cannabinoids: Approach for Treatment of Prostate Ca

Cannabinoids Offer Novel Approach For Treatment Of Prostate Cancer

The administration of synthetic cannabinoids inhibits malignant cell growth in human prostate cells in vitro in a dose-dependent and time-dependent manner, according to clinical trial data published in the March issue of the journal Cancer Research.

Researchers at University of Wisconsin's Department of Dermatology reported that the administration of the cannabis receptor agonist WIN-55,212-2 inhibited cell growth in certain human prostate cells, and also induced apoptosis (programmed cell death). Administration of a cannabis receptor antagonist prevented these effects.

"Our results suggest that ... cannabinoid receptor agonists (a drug or chemical that combines with a receptor to produce a physiological reaction typical of a naturally occurring substance) could be developed as novel therapeutic agents for the treatment of prostate cancer," authors concluded.

Previous trials have found cannabinoids to induce tumor regression in rodents and in human cells, including the inhibition of lung carcinoma, glioma (brain tumors), lymphoma/leukemia, skin carcinoma, and breast cancer.

For more information, please contact Paul Armentano, NORML Senior Policy Analyst, at (202) 483-5500. Full text of the study, "Cannabinoid receptor as a novel target for the treatment of prostate cancer," appears in the March 1 issue of Cancer Research.

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