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4/12/2005 - Cannabis shrinks tumors & Cannabis in the Torah


Pot Shrinks Tumors; Government Knew in '74
By Raymond Cushing, AlterNet. Posted May 31, 2000.

 
In 1974 researchers learned that THC, the active chemical in marijuana, shrank or destroyed brain tumors in test mice. But the D E A quickly shut down the study and destroyed its results, which were never replicated -- until now.      

The term medical marijuana took on dramatic new meaning in February, 2000 when researchers in Madrid announced they had destroyed incurable brain tumors in rats by injecting them with THC, the active ingredient in cannabis.
The Madrid study marks only the second time that T H C has been administered to tumor-bearing animals; the first was a Virginia investigation 26 years ago. In both studies, the THC shrank or destroyed tumors in a majority of the test subjects.
Most Americans don't know anything about the Madrid discovery. Virtually no major U.S. newspapers carried the story, which ran only once on the AP and UPI news wires, on Feb. 29, 2000.
The ominous part is that this isn't the first time scientists have discovered that THC shrinks tumors. In 1974 researchers at the Medical College of Virginia, who had been funded by the National Institute of Health to find evidence that marijuana damages the immune system, found instead that THC slowed the growth of three kinds of cancer in mice -- lung and breast cancer, and a virus-induced leukemia.
The DEA quickly shut down the Virginia study and all further cannabis/tumor research, according to Jack Herer, who reports on the events in his book, "The Emperor Wears No Clothes." In 1976 President Gerald Ford put an end to all public cannabis research and granted exclusive research rights to major pharmaceutical companies, who set out -- unsuccessfully -- to develop synthetic forms of THC that would deliver all the medical benefits without the "high."

The Madrid researchers reported in the March issue of "Nature Medicine" that they injected the brains of 45 rats with cancer cells, producing tumors whose presence they confirmed through magnetic resonance imaging (M R I). On the 12th day they injected 15 of the rats with THC and 15 with Win-55,212-2 a synthetic compound similar to THC. "All the rats left untreated uniformly died 12-18 days after glioma (brain cancer) cell inoculation ... Cannabinoid (THC)-treated rats survived significantly longer than control rats. THC administration was ineffective in three rats, which died by days 16-18. Nine of the THC-treated rats surpassed the time of death of untreated rats, and survived up to 19-35 days. Moreover, the tumor was completely eradicated in three of the treated rats." The rats treated with Win-55,212-2 showed similar results.
The Spanish researchers, led by Dr. Manuel Guzman of Complutense University, also irrigated healthy rats' brains with large doses of THC for seven days, to test for harmful biochemical or neurological effects. They found none.
"Careful MRI analysis of all those tumor-free rats showed no sign of damage related to necrosis, edema, infection or trauma ... We also examined other potential side effects of cannabinoid administration. In both tumor-free and tumor-bearing rats, cannabinoid administration induced no substantial change in behavioral parameters such as motor coordination or physical activity. Food and water intake as well as body weight gain were unaffected during and after cannabinoid delivery. Likewise, the general hematological profiles of cannabinoid-treated rats were normal. Thus, neither biochemical parameters nor markers of tissue damage changed substantially during the 7-day delivery period or for at least 2 months after cannabinoid treatment ended."
Guzman's investigation is the only time since the 1974 Virginia study that THC has been administered to live tumor-bearing animals. (The Spanish researchers cite a 1998 study in which cannabinoids inhibited breast cancer cell proliferation, but that was a "petri dish" experiment that didn't involve live subjects.)
In an email interview for this story, the Madrid researcher said he had heard of the Virginia study, but had never been able to locate literature on it. Hence, the Nature Medicine article characterizes the new study as the first on tumor-laden animals and doesn't cite the 1974 Virginia investigation.
"I am aware of the existence of that research. In fact I have attempted many times to obtain the journal article on the original investigation by these people, but it has proven impossible." Guzman said.
In 1983 the Reagan/Bush Administration tried to persuade American universities and researchers to destroy all 1966-76 cannabis research work, including compendiums in libraries, reports Jack Herer, who states, "We know that large amounts of information have since disappeared."
Guzman provided the title of the work -- "Antineoplastic activity of cannabinoids," an article in a 1975 Journal of the National Cancer Institute -- and this writer obtained a copy at the University of California medical school library in Davis and faxed it to Madrid.
The summary of the Virginia study begins, "Lewis lung adenocarcinoma growth was retarded by the oral administration of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabinol (CBN)" -- two types of cannabinoids, a family of active components in marijuana. "Mice treated for 20 consecutive days with THC and CBN had reduced primary tumor size."
The 1975 journal article doesn't mention breast cancer tumors, which featured in the only newspaper story ever to appear about the 1974 study -- in the Local section of the Washington Post on August 18, 1974. Under the headline, "Cancer Curb Is Studied," it read in part:
"The active chemical agent in marijuana curbs the growth of three kinds of cancer in mice and may also suppress the immunity reaction that causes rejection of organ transplants, a Medical College of Virginia team has discovered." The researchers "found that THC slowed the growth of lung cancers, breast cancers and a virus-induced leukemia in laboratory mice, and prolonged their lives by as much as 36 percent."
Guzman, writing from Madrid, was eloquent in his response after this writer faxed him the clipping from the Washington Post of a quarter century ago. In translation, he wrote:
"It is extremely interesting to me, the hope that the project seemed to awaken at that moment, and the sad evolution of events during the years following the discovery, until now we once again draw back the veil over the anti-tumoral power of THC, twenty-five years later. Unfortunately, the world bumps along between such moments of hope and long periods of intellectual castration."
News coverage of the Madrid discovery has been virtually nonexistent in this country. The news broke quietly on Feb. 29, 2000 with a story that ran once on the UPI wire about the Nature Medicine article. This writer stumbled on it through a link that appeared briefly on the Drudge Report web page. The New York Times, Washington Post and Los Angeles Times all ignored the story, even though its newsworthiness is indisputable: a benign substance occurring in nature destroys deadly brain tumors.
Raymond Cushing is a journalist, musician and filmmaker. This article was named by Project Censored as a "Top Censored Story of 2000."


The word cannabis was generally thought to be of Scythian origin, but Benet showed that it has a much earlier origin in Semitic languages like Hebrew, and that it appears several times throughout the Old Testament. Benet explained that "in the original Hebrew text of the Old Testament there are references to hemp, both as incense, which was an integral part of religious celebration, and as an intoxicant (2)."
Benet demonstrated that the word for cannabis is kaneh-bosm, also rendered in traditional Hebrew as kaneh or kannabus. The root kan in this construction means "reed" or "hemp", while bosm means "aromatic". This word appears five times in the Old Testament; in the books of Exodus, the Song of Songs, Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Ezekiel.
The word kaneh-bosm has been mistranslated as calamus, a common marsh plant with little monetary value that does not have the qualities or value ascribed to kaneh-bosm. The error occurred in the oldest Greek translation of the Hebrew Bible, the Septuagint in the third century BC, and was repeated in the many translations that followed (3).

Cannabis in the Thora:

Kneh Boseem
(american pronounciation: knay boss aym)

EXODUS  The Anointing Oil              
30:22 God spoke to Moses, saying:
30:23 You must take the finest fragrances, 300 shekels of distilled myrrh, two half portions, each consisting of 250 shekels of fragrant cinnamon and 250 shekels of fragrant cane,
30:24 and 500 shekels of cassia, all measured by the sanctuary standard, along with a gallon of olive oil.

"Etymologist Sara Benetowa of the Institute of Anthropological Sciences in Warsaw discovered in 1936, the connection between kaneh bosm in the Old Testament as the original Semitic Hebrew origins of the word cannabis.
Hebrew University in Jerusalem in 1980 confirmed this information as correct. "


Oldest Woman Ever
The oldest fully authenticated age to which any human has ever lived is 122 years and 164 days, by Jeanne-Louise Calment. She was born in France on February 21, 1875, and died at a nursing home in Arles, southern France on August 4, 1997. President Jacques Chirac once said Jean Calment was a little bit like a grandmother to everyone in France. She was 14 when the Eiffel Tower was completed in 1889. She led an extremely active life, taking up fencing at 85 years old, and was still riding a bicycle at 100. She portrayed herself at the age of 114 in the film Vincent And Me, to become the oldest actress in film.
To: The Smoker's Club,
I was in England last year and noted an article in the Daily Mail, dated 10-21-03: How the world's oldest man lived to 122 by smoking'.  Seems a Mr Seil Yi died that month in Cambodia. In the same article it mentioned Frenchwoman, Jeanne-Louose Calment was the oldest age authenticated woman died in 1997. Ms Calment was also a daily smoker. Here in Florida, our oldest man died last year at age 113, but he quit smoking at age 94. My grandmother died at age 96, smoked two packs a day. My geanealogy goes back to 1640. We were all smokers, living into our 80's back in the 1600 and 1700's, when most people were dying in their 40's. What's the message here? Want to live a long life? Smoke.
Jim Ringo, Jensen Beach, FL

Cannabis extract shrinks brain tumours

August 15 2004 NewScientist.com news service
www.newscientist.com/news/ last article

Cannabis extracts may shrink brain tumours and other cancers by blocking the growth of the blood vessels which feed them, suggests a new study.
An active component of the street drug has previously been shown to improve brain tumours in rats. But now Manuel Guzmn at Complutense University, Spain, and colleagues have demonstrated how the cannabis extracts block a key chemical needed for tumours to sprout blood vessels a process called angiogenesis.
And for the first time, the team has shown the cannabinoids impede this chemical in people with the most aggressive form of brain cancer - glioblastoma multiforme.
Cristina Blzquez at Complutense University, and one of the team, stresses the results are preliminary. But its a good point to start and continue, she told New Scientist.
The cannabinoid inhibits the angiogenesis response - if a tumour doesnt do angiogenesis, it doesnt grow, she explains. So if you can improve angiogenesis on one side and kill the tumour cells on the other side, you can try for a therapy for cancer.
"This research provides an important new lead compound for anti-cancer drugs targeting cancer's blood supply, says Richard Sullivan, head of clinical programmes, at Cancer Research UK.

Fat molecule
The team tested the effects of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol in 30 mice. They found the marijuana extract inhibited the expression of several genes related to the production of a chemical called vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF).
VEGF is critical for angiogenesis, which allows tumours to grow a network of blood vessels to supply their growth. The cannabinoid significantly lowered the activity of VEGF in the mice and two human brain cancer patients, the study showed.
The drug did this by increasing the activity of a fat molecule called ceramide, suggests the study, as adding a ceramide inhibitor stifled the ability of the cannabinoid to block VEGF.

Small and pallid
We saw that the tumours [in mice] were smaller and a bit pallid, adds Blzquez. The paleness of the cancer reflected its lack of blood supply as a result of the treatment. In the human patients, she says: "It seems that it works, but it's very early."

Sullivan points out: Although this work is at an early stage of development other research has already demonstrated that VEGF is an important drug target for a range of cancers.
He emphasises the need for further work on cannabinoid combinations. Cannabinoids would need to generate very strong data in the future as there are already a number of VEGF inhibitors in clinical development, he says.
The two patients in the ongoing study are among 14 in a clinical trial of the drug. The patients are given one cycle of treatment, lasting a few days, and their survival and general health are being studied.
Journal reference: Cancer Research (vol 64, p 5617)

Shaoni Bhattacharya




------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Cannabis may block growth of brain cancer
By James Hamilton
www.sundayherald.com/44079

Cannabis chemicals may provide
a new way of treating deadly brain cancer.

August 15 2004

Scientists have shown that cannabinoids the chemicals responsible for the drugs high deter the growth of blood vessels which feed the tumour.
They appear to prevent genes making a protein called VEGF (vascular endothelial growth factor) that stimulates the sprouting of blood vessels.
Cutting off tumours blood supply is one of the latest anti-cancer strategies being explored by scientists. In studies cannabinoids significantly reduced the activity of VEGF in laboratory mice.
They also lowered VEGF levels in tumour tissue samples taken from two patients with glioblastoma multiforme, the most lethal brain tumour type.
About 4400 new cases of brain tumour are diagnosed in the UK each year. A small percentage of these are grade four gliomas, the most aggressive and dangerous brain tumours.
Only about 6% of people diagnosed with these high- grade cancers live for more than three years. The disease is normally treated with surgery, followed by radiotherapy and possibly chemotherapy. But the main tumour often evades complete destruction and grows again to kill the patient.
Cannabinoids had previously been shown to inhibit the growth of blood vessels in mice. But the mechanism involved remained a mystery and it was not known if the same effect occurred in humans.
In the new Spanish-led study, cannabinoids were injected into mice with gliomas. DNA analysis was then carried out on 267 genes associated with the growth of tumour blood vessels. It showed that the cannabis compounds reduced the activity of several genes involved in VEGF production.
Professor Manuel Guzman, from Complutense University in Madrid, said: In both patients, VEGF levels in tumour extracts were lower after cannabinoid inoculation.

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