Written by ι Stock Market Media Group — June 18, 2013
Nuvilex Inc.’s (OTCQB: NVLX) subsidiary, Medical Marijuana Sciences, Inc., has already declared its focus will be on pancreatic cancer and cancers of the brain, and that research will put the company right in the middle of what is turning into a real explosion in the industry. Each week it seems a new study or report is presented in one journal or another, and these new findings are coming about as fast as each new state in the US is taking up legislation to legalize marijuana for medicinal purposes.
Medical Marijuana Sciences will initially utilize cannabidiol, one of the compounds found in Cannabis, as the basis for developing treatments for some of the deadliest forms of cancer that have historically shown they’re extremely difficult to treat. Meanwhile other groups are finding success initiating research using cannabis for epilepsy, heart damage, and traumatic brain injuries.
In a new animal study found in the journals Behavioral Brain Research and Experimental Brain Research, the study’s author suggests that marijuana could act as a type of vaccine protecting the brain from future traumatic brain injuries. Dr. Yosef Sarne, of the Adelson Center for the Biology of Addictive Diseases at Tel Aviv University, authored the study and theorizes that ultra-low doses of tetrahydrocannabinol or THC − the main psychoactive component of marijuana − induces minor damage to the brain, which may actually “precondition” the brain to protect it against more severe damage from injuries such as hypoxia (lack of oxygen), seizures or toxic drug exposure.
In Dr. Sarne’s prior studies, mice were injected with higher doses of THC around 30 minutes before or after incurring a brain injury. However, in this study, mice were injected with a single, very low dose of THC about 1,000 to 10,000 times less than what is said to be found in a conventional marijuana cigarette or “joint,” and these injections came one to seven days before or 1 to 3 days after a brain injury.
Researchers then examined the mice three to seven weeks after the brain injury and found that the rodents treated with THC had enhanced biochemical processes which protected brain cells and preserved cognitive function over time. The treated group performed better in learning and memory tests, and they showed increased amounts of neuro-protective chemicals as compared to the control group of mice not treated with THC.
In past laboratory experiments, Sarne’s group found that ultra-low doses of THC affected cell signaling, preventing cell death and promoting certain growth factors. Dr. Sarne says the wider window before injections can jump-start biochemical processes which protect brain cells and preserve cognitive function over time. The researchers concluded that the use of low doses of THC can prevent long-term cognitive damage that results from brain injury in mice, but the drug needs to be tested in human trials.
Dr. Sarne wrote in an email with regard to this study, “Since we deal, in this case, in a basic process (THC is protective against a variety of insults, not just a specific condition); I personally believe it will go beyond rodents.”
Nuvilex’s COO, Dr. Gerald Crabtree, recognizes each new study as a benefit to the industry and said, “Dr. Sarne’s work adds to the growing mountain of evidence that components of cannabis may have valuable roles in the treatment of a myriad of serious diseases.”
He went on to say… “Medical Marijuana Sciences has a number of advantages it can offer to this area from its research interests. Nuvilex’s ‘in-house’ experience in drug development, particularly in the cancer area, coupled with the knowledge gleaned during the development of our pancreatic cancer treatment, serves as a strong foundation upon which Medical Marijuana Sciences can build treatments, using constituents of Cannabis, for deadly forms of cancer.”