Medical weed is being tested for the first time to treat brain tumors. After a successful start, Sativex hemp spray enters the 2nd phase of the first clinical trials for the treatment of glioblastoma – the most common and most aggressive primary brain tumor.
Cannabis Oral Spray
Sativex, also known as Nabiximols, is an oral spray based on cannabis extract. It is used to relieve the unpleasant symptoms of multiple sclerosis. In 2011, cannabis active substances, in particular THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) and CBD (cannabidiol), were found to reduce brain tumors’ growth in cell cultures and mice.
This year, Susan Short from the University of Leeds in the UK and her colleagues published the results of phase 1 of these clinical trials, which involved 27 patients with glioblastoma. It aimed to verify the safety of Sativex treatment with temozolomide in humans.
The first phase of the tests turned out excellent. Although the introductory part of the clinical trials was not aimed at evaluating the success of the treatment, the results are promising in this respect as well. 83 percent of the participants who received this treatment and only 44 percent of patients with placebo lived after one year passed.
Second Round Test of Brain Tumor Treatment
A team of experts, led by Susan Short, will soon launch another round of the first clinical trials of this kind to test the use of Sativex spray in the treatment of brain tumors in human patients.
In the upcoming round, 232 patients with glioblastoma brain cancer from 15 British hospitals will take part in the tests. Two-thirds will receive Sativex in combination with the chemotherapeutic agent temozolomide, and one-third will receive a placebo.
Even though cannabis is increasingly used in modern medicine, Short recommends that patients always consult their doctor for use.