London, United Kingdom: The administration of THC in combination with conventional anti-leukemia therapies enhances the effectiveness of anti-cancer agents in vitro (e.g., in a test tube or petri dish), according to preclinical data to be published in the journal Leukemia & Lymphoma.

Investigators at St George's University and St. Bartholomew's Hospital in London reported that THC acts synergistically with other cytotoxic agents (toxic agents that effect specific cells) to target and kill luekemic cells. "Overall, these results demonstrate for the first time that a combination approach with THC and established cytotoxic agents may enhance cell death," authors concluded.

Investigators had previously reported that THC was a "potent inducer of apoptosis" (cell suicide) in leukemic cell lines.

Earlier this year, the journal Cancer Research reported that the administration of cannabinoids halts the spread of a wide range of cancers, including prostate cancer, breast cancer, lung cancer, pancreatic cancer, and brain cancer.

Commenting on the study, NORML Deputy Director Paul Armentano said that the findings might indicate a future role for cannabinoids as an adjunct to standard anti-cancer treatments like chemotherapy.

The study's authors estimated that anti-cancer drug derived from cannabinoids could become available within "two to three years."


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Copyright: 2008 NORML
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Website: Pot Compound Enhances Efficacy Of Anti-Cancer Agents, Study Says - NORML