- New research suggests CBD could be used to help treat skin cancer
- Mice tested with CBD lived longer than those untreated, and had a greater quality of life than those treated with traditional cancer medication
- Skin cancer is the 5th most common cancer in the UK
A new study has found that Cannabidiol (CBD) has the potential to be used in future treatments of skin cancer.
Scientists at the Augusta University Medical Center researched the potential effectiveness of CBD in the treatment of skin cancer, specifically melanoma.
Using lab mice diagnosed with melanoma, split into three sections: those treated with CBD, those treated with a common anti-cancer drug, Cisplatin, and a control group.
The mice treated with Cisplatin received twice-weekly injections of a 5mg Cisplatin solution. CBD treated Mice were provided with a 5mg CBD oil. The control group was given no treatment.
The mice treated with Cisplatin lived the longest, while those who received no treatments quickly died.
The CBD-treated mice treated did live significantly longer than the control group, exhibiting a greatly improved quality of life (researchers determined this by studying the mice’s behaviour) than the Cisplatin group.
While the Cisplatin-treated mice did live longer than those treated with CBD, they demonstrated a heavy reduction in movement and an increase in aggressive tendencies.
The authors concluded:
“We demonstrate a potential beneficial therapeutic effect of cannabinoids, which could influence the course of melanoma in a murine model.
“Increased survival and less tumorgenicity are novel findings that should guide research to better understand the mechanisms by which cannabinoids could be utilized as adjunctive treatment of cancer, specifically melanoma.
“Further studies are necessary to evaluate this potentially new and novel treatment of malignant melanoma.”
“We demonstrate a potential beneficial therapeutic effect of cannabinoids, which could influence the course of melanoma in a murine model.“
While rats treated with the traditional cancer treatment lived longer, their quality of life was much lower than those treated with CBD. However, those treated with CBD lived longer and had a better quality of life than those untreated.
Further research will be needed to provide more conclusive evidence on the efficacy of CBD treatment in skin cancers in humans.
There is even research that cannabinoids can work in conjunction with traditional chemotherapy treatments.
Looking at how mice treated with CBD had a better quality of life, and how mice treated with Cisplatin lived the longest, theoretically, treatments which combine the two could potentially help patients live longer and have a higher quality of life.
Skin cancer is the 5th most common cancer in the UK, accounting for 4% of all new cancer cases. There are around 2,400 melanoma skin cancer deaths in the UK every year, that’s more than 6 every day.
Melanoma is an easily treatable cancer if caught early. However, there is currently no effective treatment if it is diagnosed in its advanced stages. Unfortunately, around 1 in 10 melanoma skin cancer cases are diagnosed at a late stage in England.
While more research is needed, this new study offers hope to thousands of cancer patients in the UK. Including cannabinoids in cancer treatments offers the potential to greatly improve end of life care while potentially reducing the chance of fatality.