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CBD and Cancer

CBD and Cancer

In cancer treatment, cannabinoids, such as dronabinol (synthetic Δ9-THC) and nabilone (a synthetic cannabinoid similar to Δ9-THC), are mainly used in association with chemotherapy in order to decrease its side effects such as pain, weight loss, nausea, and vomiting. However, incoming evidences have suggested that their activity could not be ascribed solely to these “palliative” effects, but rather the compounds could possess some interesting properties in terms of inhibition of tumor cell proliferation.

The first evidence of the ability of cannabinoids to reduce the growth of lung adenocarcinoma both in vitro and in vivo has been reported by Munson et al. in 1975 [101]. As mentioned above, in recent years a number of researches have been made to evaluate the antiproliferative and proapoptotic effects of cannabinoids in both in vitro and in vivo models and in different cancer types, such as glioma, breast, pancreas, prostate, colorectal and lung carcinoma, and lymphoma [102–109]. These results prompted up the research of the possible molecular mechanism involved in the effects mediated by cannabinoids, together with the discovery of new activities elicited by these compounds, such as the interference with angiogenesis, cancer cell migration, and invasion [110]. All these findings strongly reinforce the idea that these compounds are able to control the cell survival/death fate and, therefore, they could be good candidates in cancer therapies.

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