SAN FRANCISCO - A University of California San Francisco study says that
short-term use of medical marijuana causes no harm to people with HIV who
are on combination antiretroviral therapy, according to Health Day News.
Researchers said they could find no harmful changes in HIV levels in the
participants when they smoked marijuana or took dronabinol, an oral medical
cannabinoid. The study examined 62 people with HIV who are on
antiretroviral regimens containing a protease inhibitor and lasted 25 days.
Researched divided the volunteers into three groups. A group of 20 smoked
marijuana. A second group of 22 received dronabinol and the final group of
20 received an oral placebo. CD 4 T-cell counts increased by about 20
percent for groups that used marijuana and dronabinol. CD 8 T-cell counts
increased by 20 percent in the marijuana group and by 10 percent in the
dronabinol group. There was no increase in CD 4 or CD 8 T-cell counts in
the placebo group. "The change in lymphocyte counts for the smoked
marijuana group is intriguing. At a minimum, it contradicts findings from
previous studies suggesting that smoked marijuana suppresses the immune
system," said study author Dr. Donald Abrams, a USCF professor of clinical
medicine.


Pubdate: Wed, 27 Aug 2003
Source: Houston Voice (TX)
Copyright: 2003 Window Media LLC
Contact: editor@sovo.com
Website: http://www.houstonvoice.com/