A team of Australian researchers is set to carry out the first cannabis trial in the world to determine if medical cannabis can stop the growth of glioblastoma which is a very severe type of brain tumor. Every year, at least 1,000 people in Australia are being diagnosed with glioblastoma, with less than 5 percent of these patients lasting for more than five years. Tremendously, the rate of survival ranges in most situations with some patients died in less than six months. But due to the rise of medicinal marijuana, patients are now having hopes of surviving this deadly brain tumor.
Scientists on cannabis and cancer have conducted several animal studies. There have also been some critical human studies linking cannabis and brain tumors. However, Dr. Janet Schloss who is a Brisbane naturopath and Professor Charlie Teo who is a famous neurosurgeon will have the opportunity to become the first researchers to study the impact of THC as a friendly treatment to standard surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation in patients suffering from glioblastoma.
In 2017, specific forms of cannabis were legalized in Australia. Doctors were also permitted to prescribe medical cannabis treatments to patients. Moreover, the legalization of certain types of marijuana in Australia eliminated long-standing restrictions on scientific cannabis research. Scientists were previously unable to conduct comprehensive research on the drug, that examined the side-effects of cannabis use. Due to legalization, a scientist can now conduct clinical trials on the use of cannabis as a treatment for certain conditions.
Dr. Janet Schloss is a naturopath and nutritionist at the Endeavour College of Natural Health, and neurosurgeon Charlie Teo can conduct clinical trials on marijuana. These researchers are hoping to decide if high-potency cannabis oil can help and support necessary cancer treatments. Their objective is to use cannabis to reduce tumor size and improve in chemo and radiation therapies. They also hope that THC can help reduce tumor regrowth in patients suffering from glioblastoma. If cannabis can reduce tumor regrowth, then the rate of survival among patients will increase, leading to a longer lifespan and quality of life for people who have brain cancer.
Dr. Schloss mentioned two primary examples for her and Prof. Teo’s upcoming trial. Researchers in Spain, also discovered that cannabis-infused injections reduced tumor size and increased the lifespan of patients. Another, research conducted by GM Pharmaceuticals showed the “proof of concept” with medical cannabis treatments that lessened tumor size and regrowth.
Dr. Schloss and Prof. Teo will conduct their research at the Endeavour College of Natural Health. The study consists of a randomized trial. Each participant will receive medical cannabis treatments and standard cancer treatments. The objective of Schloss and Teo is to determine the extent to which medical cannabis can facilitate those conventional treatments.
According to Schloss, participants will take little amounts of cannabis oil at night before they sleep. The doses will contain only a small amount of THC so that patients won’t be paranoid. BioCeuticals is the company responsible for supplying the researchers with the cannabis oil which has been explicitly produced glioblastoma research.