“…taking substances similar to those found in cannabis might one day help to treat colon cancer.
Raymond DuBois and colleagues at the University of Texas, Houston, discovered that a key receptor for cannabinoids – compounds similar to the active ingredient of cannabis – is turned off in most types of human colon cancer cells.
Similarly, mice genetically engineered to develop colon tumours developed more of them if the receptor, called CB1, was knocked out What’s more, tumours shrank when the genetically engineered mice were injected with a cannabinoid.
One suggestion is that lack of CB1 encourages tumour growth because the receptor normally interacts with cannabinoids made by the body to prompt cells to die. This opens up a possible two-step treatment for colon cancer…”