Is Treating Cancer the Next Great Opportunity for Marijuana Stocks? — The Motley Fool

Many cancer patients already benefit from taking a drug with an active ingredient that is a synthetic version of THC, the primary psychotropic chemical in marijuana. Marinol won U.S. regulatory approval back in 1985 for alleviating nausea and vomiting associated with chemotherapy used to treat cancer.

Results from a recent study suggest that marijuana-based drugs might be effective at more than just helping with side effects of chemotherapy. Marijuana could actually help fight cancer. Is treating cancer the next great opportunity for marijuana stocks? 

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Latest findings

A team led by Dr. Wai Liu at St George’s, University of London, medical school recently published findings from a study exploring cannabinoids in treating leukemia. The study found that cannabinoids appear to be effective in killing leukemia cells — and especially so when combined with chemotherapy. 

Dr. Liu and his team conducted multiple experiments using different combinations of cannabinoids in fighting leukemia cancer cell in the laboratory. In addition, the team performed tests to see if different sequences of treatment made a difference.

This research found that giving an initial treatment of chemotherapy followed by treatment with cannabinoids significantly improved overall results in killing the blood cancer cells compared to chemotherapy alone. The major implication of this study is that cannabinoids could hold tremendous potential as part of a cancer treatment regimen.

It’s important to note that this was only a laboratory test. The research performed by the St. George’s team didn’t involve humans. However, the results were promising and prompted the scientists involved in the study to call for additional confirmatory clinical trials. 

Other studies 

The St. George’s study wasn’t the first one in 2017 to show great promise for cannabinoids in treating cancer. Earlier this year,…

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