New research from Spain suggests that THC — the main active ingredient in marijuana – may have potential for fighting cancer by promoting cancer cell death Reuters reported April 2.
Guillermo Velasco and colleagues at Complutense University in Madrid found decreased tumor growth and increased autophagy, leading to cancer cell death, in mice with cancer after the lab animals received doses of THC. The researchers also found that THC appeared kill off cancer cells in a pair of patients diagnosed with an aggressive form of brain cancer.
“Our findings support that safe, therapeutically efficacious doses of THC may be reached in cancer patients,” Velasco said.
The findings were published April 1, 2009 in the Journal of Clinical Investigation.