London, United Kingdom: Brain tumor patients treated with cannabis extracts possessed increased one-year survival rates compared to those who went untreated, according to clinical trial data reported this week by British biotechnology firm GW Pharmaceuticals.
Twenty-one patients with recurrent glioblastoma multiforme and who were undergoing conventional anti-cancer treatment participated in the study. Patients received either a proprietary cannabis extract containing a combination of THC and CBD or a placebo.
"[P]atients with documented recurrent GBM treated with THC:CBD had an 83 percent one year survival rate compared with 53 percent for patients in the placebo cohort," the company summarized in a press release. "Median survival for the THC:CBD group was greater than 550 days compared with 369 days in the placebo group."
The study's findings replicate preclinical data demonstrating that the adjunctive use of cannabinoids with temozolomide may be associated with greater anti-cancer activity than the use of conventional therapy alone.
Glioblastoma multiforme is an especially aggressive form of cancer, with only 28 percent of patients surviving one year and fewer than four percent surviving five years.
For more information on the potential anti-cancer activity of cannabinoids, please see: http://norml.org/library/item/gliomascancer.