Water Extracts from Industrial Hemp Waste Inhibit the Adhesion and Development of Candida Biofilm and Showed Antioxidant Activity on HT-29 Colon Cancer Cells

pubmed logo

“The evolution of regulatory perspectives regarding the health and nutritional properties of industrial hemp-based products (Cannabis sativa L.) has pushed research to focus on the development of new methods for both the extraction and formulation of the bioactive compounds present in hemp extracts. While the psychoactive and medicinal properties of hemp-derived cannabinoid extracts are well known, much less has been investigated on the functional and antimicrobial properties of hemp extracts.

Within the hemp value chain, various agricultural wastes and by-products are generated. These materials can be valorised through eco-innovations, ultimately promoting sustainable economic development. In this study, we explored the use of waste from industrial light cannabis production for the extraction of bioactive compounds without the addition of chemicals. The five extracts obtained were tested for their antimicrobial activity on both planktonic and sessile cells of pathogenic strains of the Candida albicansCandida parapsilosis, and Candida tropicalis species and for their antioxidant activity on HT-29 colon cancer cells under oxidative stress.

Our results demonstrated that these extracts display interesting properties both as antioxidants and in hindering the development of fungal biofilm, paving the way for further investigations into the sustainable valorisation of hemp waste for different biomedical applications.”



Cannabis use disorder and perioperative outcomes following complex cancer surgery

pubmed logo

“Introduction: Cannabis usage is increasing in the United States, especially among patients with cancer. We sought to evaluate whether cannabis use disorder (CUD) was associated with higher morbidity and mortality among patients undergoing complex cancer surgery.

Methods: Patients who underwent complex cancer surgery between January 2016 and December 2019 were identified in the National Inpatient Sample database. CUD was defined according to ICD-10 codes. Propensity score matching was performed to create a 1:1 matched cohort that was well balanced with respect to covariates, which included patient comorbidities, sociodemographic factors, and procedure type. The primary composite outcome was in-hospital mortality and seven major perioperative complications (myocardial ischemia, acute kidney injury, stroke, respiratory failure, venous thromboembolism, hospital-acquired infection, and surgical procedure-related complications).

Results: Among 15 014 patients who underwent a high-risk surgical procedure, a cohort of 7507 patients with CUD (median age; 43 years [IQR: 30-56 years]; n = 3078 [41.0%] female) were matched with 7507 patients who were not cannabis users (median age; 44 years [IQR: 30-58 years); n = 2997 [39.9%] female). CUD was associated with slight increased risk relative to postoperative kidney injury (CUD, 7.8% vs. no CUD, 6.1%); however, in-hospital mortality was slightly lower (CUD, 0.9% vs. no CUD, 1.6%) (both p < 0.001). On multivariable analysis, after controlling for other risk factors, CUD was not associated with higher morbidity and mortality (adjusted odds ratio: 1.06, 95% CI: 0.98-1.15; p = 0.158).

Conclusion: CUD was not associated with a higher risk of postoperative morbidity and mortality following complex cancer surgery.”



Cannabidiol Inhibits Epithelial Ovarian Cancer: Role of Gut Microbiome

pubmed logo

“Epithelial ovarian cancer is among the deadliest gynecological tumors worldwide. Clinical treatment usually consists of surgery and adjuvant chemo- and radiotherapies. Due to the high rate of recurrence and rapid development of drug resistance, the current focus of research is on finding effective natural products with minimal toxic side effects for treating epithelial ovarian tumors.

Cannabidiol is among the most abundant cannabinoids and has a non-psychoactive effect compared to tetrahydrocannabinol, which is a key advantage for clinical application. Studies have shown that cannabidiol has antiproliferative, pro-apoptotic, cytotoxic, antiangiogenic, anti-inflammatory, and immunomodulatory properties. However, its therapeutic value for epithelial ovarian tumors remains unclear.

This study aims to investigate the effects of cannabidiol on epithelial ovarian tumors and to elucidate the underlying mechanisms.

The results showed that cannabidiol has a significant inhibitory effect on epithelial ovarian tumors. In vivo experiments demonstrated that cannabidiol could inhibit tumor growth by modulating the intestinal microbiome and increasing the abundance of beneficial bacteria. Western blot assays showed that cannabidiol bound to EGFR/AKT/MMPs proteins and suppressed EGFR/AKT/MMPs expression in a dose-dependent manner. Network pharmacology and molecular docking results suggested that cannabidiol could affect the EGFR/AKT/MMPs signaling pathway.”



Cannabidiol induces ERK activation and ROS production to promote autophagy and ferroptosis in glioblastoma cells

pubmed logo

“Small molecule-driven ERK activation is known to induce autophagy and ferroptosis in cancer cells. Herein the effect of cannabidiol (CBD), a phytochemical derived from Cannabis sativa, on ERK-driven autophagy and ferroptosis has been demonstrated in glioblastoma (GBM) cells (U87 and U373 cells).

CBD imparted significant cytotoxicity in GBM cells, induced activation of ERK (not JNK and p38), and increased intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS) levels. It increased the autophagy-related proteins such as LC3 II, Atg7, and Beclin-1 and modulated the expression of ferroptosis-related proteins such as glutathione peroxidase 4 (GPX4), SLC7A11, and TFRC. CBD significantly elevated the endoplasmic reticulum stress, ROS, and iron load, and decreased GSH levels. Inhibitors of autophagy (3-MA) and ferroptosis (Fer-1) had a marginal effect on CBD-induced autophagy/ferroptosis. Treatment with N-acetyl-cysteine (antioxidant) or PD98059 (ERK inhibitor) partly reverted the CBD-induced autophagy/ferroptosis by decreasing the activation of ERK and the production of ROS.

Overall, CBD induced autophagy and ferroptosis through the activation of ERK and generation of ROS in GBM cells.”


“In this study, we investigated the anti-cancer effect of CBD. CBD activated ROS production and ERK pathway and modulated the expression of proteins related to autophagy and ferroptosis. Additionally, CBD suppressed the activity of SLC7A11, a component of the System Xc-cystine/glutamate receptor, and enhanced the expression of TFRC, an iron ion channel. Through these mechanisms, our study provides evidence that CBD stimulates both autophagy and ferroptosis in GBM cells”


Discovering single cannabidiol or synergistic antitumor effects of cannabidiol and cytokine-induced killer cells on non-small cell lung cancer cells

pubmed logo

“Introduction: A multitude of findings from cell cultures and animal studies are available to support the anti-cancer properties of cannabidiol (CBD). Since CBD acts on multiple molecular targets, its clinical adaptation, especially in combination with cancer immunotherapy regimen remains a serious concern.

Methods: Considering this, we extensively studied the effect of CBD on the cytokine-induced killer (CIK) cell immunotherapy approach using multiple non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) cells harboring diverse genotypes.

Results: Our analysis showed that, a) The Transient Receptor Potential Cation Channel Subfamily V Member 2 (TRPV2) channel was intracellularly expressed both in NSCLC cells and CIK cells. b) A synergistic effect of CIK combined with CBD, resulted in a significant increase in tumor lysis and Interferon gamma (IFN-g) production. c) CBD had a preference to elevate the CD25+CD69+ population and the CD62L_CD45RA+terminal effector memory (EMRA) population in NKT-CIK cells, suggesting early-stage activation and effector memory differentiation in CD3+CD56+ CIK cells. Of interest, we observed that CBD enhanced the calcium influx, which was mediated by the TRPV2 channel and elevated phosphor-Extracellular signal-Regulated Kinase (p-ERK) expression directly in CIK cells, whereas ERK selective inhibitor FR180204 inhibited the increasing cytotoxic CIK ability induced by CBD. Further examinations revealed that CBD induced DNA double-strand breaks via upregulation of histone H2AX phosphorylation in NSCLC cells and the migration and invasion ability of NSCLC cells suppressed by CBD were rescued using the TRPV2 antagonist (Tranilast) in the absence of CIK cells. We further investigated the epigenetic effects of this synergy and found that adding CBD to CIK cells decreased the Long Interspersed Nuclear Element-1 (LINE-1) mRNA expression and the global DNA methylation level in NSCLC cells carrying KRAS mutation. We further investigated the epigenetic effects of this synergy and found that adding CBD to CIK cells decreased the Long Interspersed Nuclear Element-1 (LINE-1) mRNA expression and the global DNA methylation level in NSCLC cells carrying KRAS mutation.

Conclusions: Taken together, CBD holds a great potential for treating NSCLC with CIK cell immunotherapy. In addition, we utilized NSCLC with different driver mutations to investigate the efficacy.”


“In conclusion, CBD holds a great potential for treating NSCLC with CIK cell immunotherapy and its complete success requires careful consideration of the patients’ genetic backgrounds. Cell lines with KRAS mutation (A549 cells) and EML4-ALK rearrangement (NCI-H2228) appear to be highly responsive in this combinatorial setup. Beyond that, CBD affects NKT subpopulations of CIK cells and may modulate the TRPV2 channel and the p-ERK1/2 pathway. However, the biosafety of a combination of CIK cells and CBD requires further validation in animal models.”


A Comparative Analysis on the Potential Anticancer Properties of Tetrahydrocannabinol, Cannabidiol, and Tetrahydrocannabivarin Compounds Through In Silico Approach

pubmed logo

“Objective: The purpose of this study is to comparatively analyze the anticancer properties of Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), Cannabidiol (CBD), and Tetrahydrocannabivarin (THCV) using In silico tools.

Methods: Using SwissADME and pkCSM, the physicochemical and pharmacokinetics properties of the cannabinoids were evaluated. Protox-II was utilized for the assessment of their cytotoxicity. The chemical-biological interactions of the cannabinoids were also predicted using the Way2Drug Predictive Server which comprises Acute Rat Toxicity, Adver-Pred, CLC-Pred, and Pass Target Prediction.

Results: Both physicochemical and drug-likeness analysis using SwissADME favored THCV due to high water solubility and lower MLOGP value. On the other hand, ADMET assessment demonstrated that THC and CBD have good skin permeability while both THC and THCV exhibited better BBB permeability and have low inhibitory activity on the CYP1A2 enzyme. Furthermore, toxicity predictions by Protox-II revealed that CBD has the lowest probability of hepatotoxicity, carcinogenicity, and immunotoxicity. Contrarily, it has the highest probability of being inactive in mutagenicity and cytotoxicity. Additionally, CLC results revealed that CBD has the highest probability against lung carcinoma. The rat toxicity prediction showed that among the cannabinoids, THCV had the lowest LD50 concentration in rat oral and IV.

Conclusion: Overall, in silico predictions of the three cannabinoid compounds revealed that they are good candidates for oral drug formulation. Among the three cannabinoids, THCV is an excellent anticancer aspirant for future chemotherapy with the most favorable results in drug-likeness and ADMET analysis, pharmacological properties evaluation, and cytotoxicity assessment results. Further study on bioevaluation of compounds is needed to elucidate their potential pharmacological activities.”



Synergistic effect of cannabidiol with dasatinib on lung cancer by SRC/PI3K/AKT signal pathway

pubmed logo

“Dasatinib-related resistance frequently occurs and may lead to the failure of chemotherapy; thus, dose interruptions are necessary. Cannabidiol (CBD) has potential for integration with orthodox cancer care.

In this study, we explored the combination effect of CBD and dasatinib on A549 cells. CBD in combination with dasatinib could induce significant synergistic apoptosis in vitro (ZIP > 10) and in vivo. The combination of CBD and low-dose dasatinib exhibited antiproliferative and proapoptotic effects through up-regulation of caspase-3 and Bax, and down-regulation of Bcl-2 in A549 cells. The xenograft mouse model suggested that the combination was more efficient and safer.

In short, CBD and low-dose dasatinib exhibited a synergistic effect on anticancer by targeting the SRC/PI3K/AKT signaling pathway, suggesting a potential therapeutic option for the treatment of lung cancer.”


“In conclusion, we demonstrated that CBD can enhance dasatinib-induced apoptosis and cytotoxicity against lung cancer in vitro and in vivo. Apoptosis-related genes and PI3K/AKT-related signaling were significantly dysregulated in A549 lung cancer cells treated with dasatinib in combination with CBD. These findings indicated that combination therapy of CBD plus low-dose dasatinib is a promising clinical therapy, and the mechanism of the synergistic effect of CBD and dasatinib may be the SRC/PI3K/AKT and Bax/Bcl-2/caspase-3 signaling pathways.”


Anti-proliferative and apoptotic effect of cannabinoids on human pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma xenograft in BALB/c nude mice model

pubmed logo

“Human pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) is a highly malignant and lethal tumor of the exocrine pancreas.

Cannabinoids extracted from the hemp plant Cannabis sativa have been suggested as a potential therapeutic agent in several human tumors. However, the anti-tumor effect of cannabinoids on human PDAC is not entirely clarified. In this study, the anti-proliferative and apoptotic effect of cannabinoid solution (THC:CBD at 1:6) at a dose of 1, 5, and 10 mg/kg body weight compared to the negative control (sesame oil) and positive control (5-fluorouracil) was investigated in human PDAC xenograft nude mice model.

The findings showed that cannabinoids significantly decreased the mitotic cells and mitotic/apoptotic ratio, meanwhile dramatically increased the apoptotic cells. Parallelly, cannabinoids significantly downregulated Ki-67 and PCNA expression levels. Interestingly, cannabinoids upregulated BAX, BAX/BCL-2 ratio, and Caspase-3, meanwhile, downregulated BCL-2 expression level and could not change Caspase-8 expression level.

These findings suggest that cannabinoid solution (THC:CBD at 1:6) could inhibit proliferation and induce apoptosis in human PDAC xenograft models. Cannabinoids, including THC:CBD, should be further studied for use as the potent PDCA therapeutic agent in humans.”


“Herbal medicinal plants and their derivatives have been discovered and used as potential sources for the treatment of human cancers for decades. Of these, cannabinoids extracted from the hemp plant Cannabis sativa have been remarkably noted as a potential therapy for the treatment of several human tumors.”

“In summary, this study revealed that cannabinoids (THC:CBD) (1:6) could inhibit the proliferation and induce apoptosis in human PDAC xenograft nude mice models.”


Medical cannabis use in oncology and associated outcomes: A scoping review

pubmed logo

“Background: Natural and synthetic cannabinoids are being used worldwide to treat various symptoms in cancer patients. This study aims to map the therapeutic benefits and adverse effects associated with the use of cannabis-based drugs in these outcomes.

Methods: Following Joanna Briggs Institute guidelines a scoping review was conducted. The study protocol was available in the Open Science Framework public repository. An extensive search strategy involving databases like Cochrane Library, Embase, CINAHL, Medline/PubMed, Lilacs, Google Scholar, and Open Gray for gray literature analysis was executed by a skilled librarian. The inclusion criteria were primary studies (observational and randomized) that evaluated the efficacy and safety of cannabinoids in cancer patients. The review encompassed studies of diverse designs, publication years, and types, as long as they addressed cannabinoids’ impact in oncology.

Results: Twenty-nine (82.86%) out of total of 35 were randomized and 6 (14.14%) were non-randomized. About 57.1% of studies utilized registered products as interventions, with THC being the most natural cannabinoid cited in variable doses and administration routes. Moreover, 62.85% of studies specified the cancer types (breast, lung, sarcomas, hematological and reproductive system), while only one study detailed cancer staging. The evaluated outcomes encompassed nausea and vomiting (77.14%), appetite (11.43%), pain (8.57%), and tumor regression (2.86%) across different proportions of studies.

Conclusion: Cannabinoids show promise in managing pain, emesis, and anorexia/cachexia linked to cancer progression. New randomized clinical trials with a larger number of participants and observational studies on long-term safety are crucial to affirm their medicinal utility for cancer patients unresponsive to conventional drugs.”



Platinum (IV) drugs with cannabidiol inducing mitochondrial dysfunction and synergistically enhancing anti-tumor effects

pubmed logo

“Chemotherapy resistance is an insurmountable problem in clinical anticancer therapy. Although Oxaliplatin is an effective chemotherapeutic agent for the treatment of colorectal cancer (CRC), it still suffers from serious toxicities as well as drug resistance. In this work, three Oxaliplatin tetravalent platinum prodrugs(O1-O3) and three novel mixed ammine/amine analogs(C1-C3) were constructed, introducing cannabidiol with anti-tumor activity in their axial position.

All Pt(IV) prodrugs exhibited potent antitumor effects in a variety of tumor cell lines, especially in HCT-116 cells, where complex O3 showed strong inhibitory effects with the half maximal inhibitory concentrations (IC50) value of 6.02 ± 0.69 μM and about 2.6 times higher than that of Oxaliplatin. Further studies revealed that complex O3 decreased cellular mitochondrial membrane potential in a concentration-dependent manner and enhanced reactive oxygen species (ROS) accumulation by decreasing the expression of catalase, superoxide dismutase 2 (SOD2) and superoxide dismutase 3 (SOD3). Complex O3 induces mitochondrial dysfunction and upregulates the pro-apoptotic protein Noxa, ultimately leading to severe DNA damage. The upregulation of Phosphorylated histone protein H2AX (γ-H2AX) expression is clear evidence. In addition, O3 inhibits the expression of RAD51 protein and prevents DNA damage repair, thus overcoming drug resistance.

This strategy of combining bioactive molecules cannabidiol with platinum drugs to improve therapeutic efficacy and overcome drug resistance has been proven to be very effective and deserves further investigation.”


“The cannabidiol was introduced into the platinum antitumor drugs, and the Pt(IV) complexes O1-O3 and C1- C3 were synthesized.

•Complex O3 is highly cytotoxic to all cancer cells and cannabidiol exerts a synergistic antitumor effect with Oxaliplatin.”