Jump to content

Iacm-Bulletin Of 23 May 2010

Recommended Posts


IACM-Bulletin of 23 May 2010



* Science: Call for clinical trials on cannabinoids in amyotrophic

lateral sclerosis




Science: Call for clinical trials on cannabinoids in amyotrophic

lateral sclerosis


According to a review by scientists of the University of

Washington School of Medicine, USA, there is now enough

scientific data available to support clinical trials on cannabis in

amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). They note that "preclinical

data indicate that cannabis has powerful antioxidative, anti-

inflammatory, and neuroprotective effects" which are effects that

may be of use to combat disease progression. In recent years

several animal studies have been conducted showing that

cannabinoids may have a positive effect on disease onset and/or

life span. For example, a synthetic cannabinoid which selectively

binds to the CB2 receptor was shown to prolong survival in a

2007 study. Daily injections of the selective CB2 agonist AM-

1241 to the mice increased the survival interval after disease

onset by 56 per cent. In a 2006 study the application of a synthetic

cannabinoid (WIN55,212-2) and the inhibition of endocannabinoid

degradation delayed disease onset in the animals without affecting

life span.


In addition, cannabis has many properties that may be applicable

to the management of ALS. These include analgesia, muscle

relaxation, bronchodilation, saliva reduction, appetite stimulation,

and sleep induction, already used by many ALS patients.

Researchers stated that "from both a disease modifying and

symptom management viewpoint, clinical trials with cannabis are

the next logical step. Based on the currently available scientific

data, it is reasonable to think that cannabis might significantly slow

the progression of ALS, potentially extending life expectancy and

substantially reducing the overall burden of the disease."


(Source: Carter GT, Abood ME, Aggarwal SK, Weiss MD.

Cannabis and Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis: Hypothetical and

Practical Applications, and a Call for Clinical Trials. Am J Hosp

Palliat Care. 2010 May 3. [in press])




News in brief


***The Netherlands: Cannabis pharmacy

There is now a second pharmacy in the Netherlands which is

selling cannabis from the company Bedrocan at a lower prize than

usual pharmacies in the Netherlands since they buy large amounts

of the drug and than package it into smaller packaging units

themselves. It is the "Apotheek Maasbracht" in Maasbracht

(www.apotheekmaasbracht.nl/) not far away from Maastricht.

The first Dutch cannabis pharmacy was Hanzeplein in Groningen



***Science: Psychosis

Scientists at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New

York, USA, investigated the question whether cannabis use

disorders (CUD) are associated with an earlier age at onset of

psychosis, comparing 49 first-episode schizophrenia subjects with

CUD and 51 first-episode schizophrenia subjects with no

substance use disorders. They found out that "although cannabis

use precedes the onset of illness in most patients, there was no

significant association between onset of illness and CUD that was

not accounted for by demographic and clinical variables. Previous

studies implicating CUD in the onset of schizophrenia may need to

more comprehensively assess the relationship between CUD and

schizophrenia, and take into account additional variables that we

found associated with CUD." (Source: Sevy S, et al. Schizophr

Res. 2010 May 12. [in press])


***Science: Stroke

According to a group of Italian researchers, who investigated the

blood of 10 patients with stroke within six hours since symptoms

started and compared it with 8 control subjects, levels of the

endocannabinoid anandamide were significantly higher in stroke

patients. There was a positive correlation between anandamide

blood levels and stroke volume. (Source: Naccarato M, et al.

Lipids Health Dis 2010;9(1):47.)


***Science: Fat metabolism

According to cell experiments at the University of Porto, Portugal,

THC influences the biology of fat cells. Their observations on the

effects of cannabinoids point toward increased deposition of fat

tissue in cells and an improved insulin sensitivity of cells. (Source:

Teixeira D, et al. Obesity (Silver Spring). 2010 May 13. [in press])


***Science: Passive smoking

Scientists at the University of Mainz, Germany, investigated urine

and blood samples of 8 healthy subjects after passive exposure to

cannabis smoke for three hours in a Dutch coffee shop. "THC

could be detected in trace amounts close to the detection limit of

the used method in the first two blood samples after initial

exposure (1.5 and 3.5 h). In the 6 h blood samples, THC was not

detectable anymore." (Source: Röhrich J, et al. J Anal Toxicol



***Science: Parkinson's disease

According to research at the University of Rome Tor Vergata,

Italy, anandamide levels in cerebrospinal fluid of patients with

Parkinson's disease were more than doubled as compared to

controls. After chronic treatment with Levodopa these levels

normalized. Scientists noted that "abnormal anandamide increase

might reflect a compensatory mechanism occurring in course of

PD, aimed at normalizing dopamine depletion." (Source: Pisani V,

et al. Mov Disord 2010;25(7):920-4.)


***Science: Panic attacks

According to animal research with rats at the University of Rio

Grande do Norte, Brazil, cannabidiol (CBD) which was injected

into a certain brain region (dorsal periaqueductal gray) caused an

anxiolytic-like effect, and inhibited escape response, a panicolytic-

like effect by the activation of 5-HT1A receptors. (Source:

Soares VD, et al. Behav Brain Res 2010 May 8. [in press])


***Science: Pregnancy

According to a Dutch study the use of cannabis during pregnancy

had a specific effect on the uterine blood flow. Researchers

compared pregnant woman with continued cannabis use (9

women), cannabis use only in early pregnancy (14), continued

tobacco use (85), tobacco use only in early pregnancy (92), and

no tobacco or cannabis use during pregnancy (85 women).

(Source: El Marroun H, et al. Early Hum Dev. 2010 May 5. [in



International Association for Cannabinoid Medicines (IACM)

Am Mildenweg 6

D-59602 Ruethen


Phone: +49 (0)2952-9708571

Fax: +49 (0)2952-902651

Email: info@cannabis-med.org



If you want to be deleted from or added to the IACM-Bulletin

mailing list or if you want to change your e-mail address please


www.cannabis-med.org/english/subscribe.htm . You may choose

between different languages (English, German, French, Dutch,

Italian and Spanish).


The articles of the IACM-Bulletin can be printed, translated and

distributed freely for any non-commercial purposes, provided the

original work is properly cited. The source of the IACM-Bulletin

is "IACM, www.cannabis-med.org ".

Link to comment
Share on other sites


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Create New...