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Cannabidiol May Be Helpful In Reducing The Aggressiveness Of Breast Cancer Cells

Julie Gardener

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Cannabidiol May Be Helpful In Reducing The Aggressiveness Of Breast Cancer Cells​
In a mouse model of metastatic breast cancer the natural non-psychotropic cannabinoid cannabidiol (CBD) reduced the aggressiveness of breast cancer cells. CBD inhibited a protein called Id-1. Id proteins play an important role in tumour cell biology. The researchers of the California Pacific Medical Center Research Institute concluded that "CBD represents the first nontoxic exogenous agent that can significantly decrease Id-1 expression in metastatic breast cancer cells leading to the down-regulation of tumor aggressiveness."

The authors stressed that they were not suggesting patients smoke cannabis. They added that it would be highly unlikely that effective concentrations of CBD could be reached by smoking cannabis. Lead researcher Dr. Sean McAllister said: "Right now we have a limited range of options in treating aggressive forms of cancer. Those treatments, such as chemotherapy, can be effective but they can also be extremely toxic and difficult for patients. This compound offers the hope of a non-toxic therapy that could achieve the same results without any of the painful side effects."

(Sources: BBC News of 19 November 2007; McAllister SD, Christian RT, Horowitz MP, Garcia A, Desprez PY. Cannabidiol as a novel inhibitor of Id-1 gene expression in aggressive breast cancer cells. Mol Cancer Ther 2007;6(11):2921-7.)

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