We’ve all heard the negative connotations of cannabis – “it can give you cancer”, they say. “It’s addictive”, they utter. Well in 1974, a bunch of researchers at the Medical College of Virginia got together and decided to put an end to the debate once and for all. The aim was to demonstrate the plant’s dangers, specifically how it harms the immune system. When the results were published, the medical community and the public were in for a shock.
Funded by NIDA and a grant from the American Cancer Society, the researchers implanted tumors into mice, which were then “treated for 10 consecutive days with delta-9-THC, beginning the day after tumor implantation” in order to show that the THC would make the tumors grow faster.
The medical community awaited the results anxiously. When the research was finally published in The Journal of the National Cancer Institute, it showed that ”mice treated for 20 consecutive days with THC and CBN had reduced primary tumor size.”
This is the kind of research that should be investigated further, right?!
Well not so fast. Rather than granting additional funding, the NIDA cut off all of the funding and made every effort possible to suppress the research. As a result, only a single newspaper article, published August 18th 1974, in the local section of the Washington Post, covered this breakthrough discovery.
The research would not be revisited for another 3 decades. In the March 2000 issue of the journal Nature Medicine, Dr. Manuel Guzman, professor of biochemistry at the University of Madrid, managed to arrive at similar results when he reported that cannabinoids (like THC) not only shrink cancerous tumors in mice, they do so without damaging surrounding tissues.
The research about the effect and benefits or marijuana continues today. Visit the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NIH) to find out more.
Source: E. Munson, L. S. Harris, M. A. Friedman, W. L. Dewey, R. A. Carchman JNCI: Journal of the National Cancer Institute, Volume 55, Issue 3, September 975, Pages 597–602, https://doi.org/10.1093/jnci/55.3.597 Published: 01 September 1975
- Lifted Insight