Could Cannabidiol Become a New Cancer Drug?
Recent research has shed light on the possibility of a new therapeutic treatment for bladder cancer, one involving the use of cannabidiol (CBD).
Research conducted by the East China University of Science and Technology has shown that CBD can lead to cell death in bladder cancer. This could provide a welcome breakthrough for oncology researchers and patients alike. It could also open new doors for cannabis-based therapeutics.
The Severity of Bladder Cancer
According to the research team, bladder cancer is the tenth leading cause of cancer deaths, representing 55,000 new cases in 2020 alone.
Traditionally, bladder cancer patients have been treated with chemotherapy, usually following a surgical procedure to address a bladder tumor.
Unfortunately, researchers say 70% of patients experience some form of resistance to chemotherapy. There are also some specific anatomical challenges that can make bladder cancer difficult to effectively treat.
This has created some urgency for medical providers to develop a more effective treatment plan for bladder cancer patients.
How Cannabidiol May Promote “Cell Death”
Initial research has shown that cannabidiol (CBD) can promote “apoptosis ability” among bladder cancer cells.
Apoptosis is actually a natural process, referring to a form of programmed cell death. Bodies rely on apoptotic cells in order to continually regenerate certain tissues.
Since cancer is essentially a form of runaway cell growth, it makes sense that tumors could be inhibited by promoting cell death.
This is precisely what researchers have found. In their research, CBD was found to inhibit the proliferation of cancer cells, and greater cell death was found to occur among cells treated with CBD.
One particular test found that CBD may reduce the migration ability of cancer cells.
RNA sequencing revealed that several genes related to apoptosis, proliferation, and migration were affected by CBD treatment, findings that were later confirmed through tests to measure the presence of particular proteins.
Further, researchers found that wrapping CBD-loaded treatment particles enhanced their ability to adhere to the bladder wall, which shows promise for long-term treatment options.
The Future of Cancer Treatment?
These findings show significant promise in the treatment of cancer, showing that cell death can be increased with the introduction of CBD, as well as providing some hope for long-term treatment of cancer patients.
As with any new research, more study is needed, as many questions remain as to the exact molecular mechanisms associated with these treatments.
However, if these developments can be developed into a treatment plan for bladder cancer patients, it could bring about vast improvements for the oncology field as a whole.
Cannabis investors may one day contribute to this process by investing in companies developing and executing these treatments. Though no clinical trials are scheduled, these new developments may accelerate in the near future, providing new opportunities for biotech and cannabis stock investors.