JUN 13, 2020 1:31 PM PDT

CBD Kills Brain Cancer Cells in Petri Dish

WRITTEN BY: Annie Lennon

Cannabis products are not only popular for their psychoactive effects. An increasing number of companies and researchers are claiming its benefits for everything from acne to chronic pain and anxiety. Now, there's some early evidence suggesting it may help treat cancer too. 

Glioblastoma is an aggressive form of cancer that affects the brain and spinal cord. Around 75% of people diagnosed with it die in less than a year and less than 7% survive for more than five years with the disease. Due to these figures, researchers are keen to find new treatment options to treat it. 

CBD has been recognized for its anticancer properties by multiple studies over the last few years. Thus, a team from the University of California Davis and Colorado State University decided to see whether the compound could treat glioblastoma. 

To do so, they inserted pure CBD and a CBD extract, containing small amounts of other cannabis products, in Petri dishes containing human and canine glioblastoma cells. In the end, they found that both CBD derivatives were able to kill off the cancer cells- by disabling their function and slowing their ability to grow. 

"CBD has been zealously studied in cells for its anticancer properties over the last decade," says Chase Gross, one of the authors of the study. "Our study helps complete the in vitro puzzle, allowing us to move forward in studying CBD's effects on glioblastoma in a clinical setting using live animal models."

Although promising results, the researchers warn that it is unlikely for CBD to treat cancer alone. This is because the concentrations needed to do so may be both difficult to attain for common drug usage. On top of this, they warn that administering such CBD drugs in areas like the brain could be difficult to do without killing the patient. 



Sources: Free Think, FASEB, EurekAlert

About the Author
  • Science writer with keen interests in technology and behavioral biology. Her current focus is on the interplay between these fields to create meaningful interactions, applications and environments.
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