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Hemp Science

Claims for CBDs are flying hard and fast. At Laura's Mercantile, our policy is to share claims which are scientifically supported. The first three sections of this page include patents and peer-reviewed papers by working scientists. The final section includes credible news sources


National Institute of Health Patent US6630507B1:

Patent Abstract:

"Cannabinoids have been found to have antioxidant properties, unrelated to NMDA receptor antagonism. This new found property makes cannabinoids useful in the treatment and prophylaxis of wide variety of oxidation associated diseases, such as ischemic, age-related, inflammatory and autoimmune diseases. The cannabinoids are found to have particular application as neuroprotectants, for example in limiting neurological damage following ischemic insults, such as stroke and trauma, or in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease and HIV dementia. Nonpsychoactive cannabinoids, such as cannabidoil, are particularly advantageous to use because they avoid toxicity that is encountered with psychoactive cannabinoids at high doses useful in the method of the present invention. A particular disclosed class of cannabinoids useful as neuroprotective antioxidants is formula (I) wherein the R group is independently selected from the group consisting of H, CH.sub.3, and COCH.sub.3. ##STR1##"

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National Cancer Institute:

Cannabis and Cannabinoids PDQ, Article Overview:

  • Cannabis has been used for medicinal purposes for thousands of years.

  • By federal law, the possession of Cannabis is illegal in the United States, except within approved research settings; however, a growing number of states, territories, and the District of Columbia have enacted laws to legalize its medical use.

  • The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has not approved Cannabis as a treatment for cancer or any other medical condition.

  • Chemical components of Cannabis, called cannabinoids, activate specific receptorsthroughout the body to produce pharmacologic effects, particularly in the central nervous system and the immune system.

  • Commercially available cannabinoids, such as dronabinol and nabilone, are approved drugs for the treatment of cancer-related side effects.

  • Cannabinoids may have benefits in the treatment of cancer-related side effects.

Sullivan College of Pharmacy University of Louisville:

Investigate Kentucky Hemp-Induced Modulation of Interleukin-1 β Secretion in Ovarian Cancer Cells, First Article Body:

"Our laboratory is interested in searching for alternative therapies for ovarian cancer. Based on our preliminary studies, KY grown hemp, which is similar to marijuana yet non-addictive, demonstrated anti-cancer effects against ovarian cancer. The objective of this study is to investigate the mechanism behind the hemp-induced anti-cancer effects. Inflammation is known to play a role in carcinogenesis and Interleukins are contributing players of the inflammation. We hypothesized that the hemp-induced modulation of Interleukin-1 β (IL-1 β) production may play a role in hemp-induced anti-cancer effects. Both marijuana and hemp contain therapeutically valuable components such as Cannabidiol (CBD), Cannabidiolic Acid (CBD-A) and Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). However, hemp is more beneficial than marijuana due to its’ non-addictive properties. CBD-A and CBD-induced modulation of cytokines have been reported in different cell types. To our knowledge, hemp-induced modulation of ovarian cancer and responsible mechanisms are yet to be discovered. Methods: KY hemp extracts were made using supercritical CO2 extraction method by KY commonwealth Extracts company. CBD content of KY hemp was analyzed using High Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC) by MRX laboratories. In our laboratory, these hemp extracts were tested for its’ potential anti-cancer effects and mechanism of action. A2780 epithelial ovarian cancer cells (OCCs) were seeded in 12–well plates. Following serum starvation, OCCs were treated with either vehicle or different concentrations of hemp extracts for 24 hours. Then, cell supernatants were removed and subject to Bradford protein assay followed by IL-1 β sandwich ELISA. IL-1 β released from each treatment group was detected based on manufacturer’s protocol. In brief, IL-1 β standards, cell supernatants from treatment groups, and no hemp negative control were incubated in ELISA plate coated with IL-1 β antibodies. After a series of steps that included secondary antibodies and a substrate solution, IL-1 β levels were detected spectrophotometrically. For an experiment, each treatment was done in triplicate and each experiment was repeated a minimum of three times to ensure reproducibility. Hemp-induced attenuation of IL-1 β secretion was detected and this attenuation is significant at 500 µg/ml hemp extract treatment, which contains 335µM CBD and 591 µM CBD-A. Based on the data, it can be concluded that the hemp extract-induced attenuation of IL-1 β secretion might contribute to its protective effects against ovarian cancer."

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KY Hemp-induced Modulation of Ovarian Cancer Cell Metastasis, First Article Body:

"Our laboratory is interested in searching for a new plant-based therapeutics to treat ovarian cancer.  We are interested in studying anti-cancer effects of KY grown hemp as a potential candidate drug.  Marijuana and hemp belong to the same genus and species. However, they are different in cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) content. While both CBD and THC are therapeutically beneficial, THC consumption leads to dependence forming habits.  In contrast, hemp is harmless and non-addictive. Major objective of this study is to investigate whether KY hemp extract can modulate the metastasis of ovarian cancer. Cell migration and invasion are two important indicators of cancer metastasis. Although CBD and THC-induced attenuation of cancer cell migration and invasion have been reported in several cell lines including cervical cancer and breast cancer cells, KY hemp extract-induced anti-cancer effects are yet to be discovered. We are the first to investigate KY hemp-induced modulation of ovarian cancer cell (OCC) metastasis. Methods: Based on the manufacturer’s protocol cell migration and invasion assays were conducted using CytoSelect 96-well cell migration and invasion assay kits (Cell Biolabs). Migration and Invasion assays were based on distinguishing migratory and invasive cells from non-migratory and non-invasive cells. Migratory cells should be able to move towards the chemoattractant. Invasive cells needed to degrade the proteins in the dried basement membrane matrix, which is coated in the upper surface of the insert membrane. Two different epithelial OCCs, which are A2780 and Mes-OV, were utilized in this study. Following overnight serum starvation, OCCs were lifted using Trypsin-EDTA, and a cell suspension containing 80,000 cells per well were placed in the upper chamber of either the cell migration or the cell invasion plate. Added to the respective cell suspensions were positive controls (80 µM Doxorubicin and Cisplatin), the no hemp negative control (vehicle treated), and different concentrations of KY hemp extracts that contain 8.5-335 µM CBD. Fetal bovine serum (15%) was added to the bottom chamber of each well as the chemoattractant. After 24 hour incubation, migratory and invasive cells were detached from the opposite side of the membrane (the side facing the bottom chamber), lysed, tagged with CyQuant fluorescent dye, and quantified spectrophotometrically. Our results indicate that KY hemp extract will attenuate OCC migration in a dose dependent manner in both cell lines. In A2780 OCCs, this attenuation was significant at all concentrations tested. A2780 cells treated with 12 -15 µg/ml hemp extract that contain 2.5- 3.2 µM CBD, caused decrease in cell migration comparable to Cisplatin. Based on the data here we conclude that KY hemp has significant anti-metastatic properties against ovarian cancer. "

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US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health:

Anticancer mechanisms of cannabinoids. Study Abstract:

"In addition to the well-known palliative effects of cannabinoids on some cancer-associated symptoms, a large body of evidence shows that these molecules can decrease tumour growth in animal models of cancer. They do so by modulating key cell signalling pathways involved in the control of cancer cell proliferation and survival. In addition, cannabinoids inhibit angiogenesis and decrease metastasis in various tumour types in laboratory animals. In this review, we discuss the current understanding of cannabinoids as antitumour agents, focusing on recent discoveries about their molecular mechanisms of action, including resistance mechanisms and opportunities for their use in combination therapy. Those observations have already contributed to the foundation for the development of the first clinical studies that will analyze the safety and potential clinical benefit of cannabinoids as anticancer agents."

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World Health Organization (WHO):


"Cannabidiol (CBD) is one of the naturally occurring cannabinoids found in cannabis plants. It is a 21-carbon terpenophenolic compound which is formed following decarboxylation from a cannabidiolic acid precursor, although it can also be produced synthetically. CBD can be converted to tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) under experimental conditions; however, this does not appear to occur to any significant effect in patients undergoing CBD treatment. In experimental models of abuse liability, CBD appears to have little effect on conditioned place preference or intracranial self-stimulation. In an animal drug discrimination model CBD failed to substitute for THC. In humans, CBD exhibits no effects indicative of any abuse or dependence potential. CBD has been demonstrated as an effective treatment of epilepsy in several clinical trials, with one pure CBD product (Epidiolex®) currently in Phase III trials. There is also preliminary evidence that CBD may be a useful treatment for a number of other medical conditions. There is unsanctioned medical use of CBD based products with oils, supplements, gums, and high concentration extracts available online for the treatment of many ailments. CBD is generally well tolerated with a good safety profile. Reported adverse effects may be as a result of drug-drug interactions between CBD and patients’ existing medications. Several countries have modified their national controls to accommodate CBD as a medicinal product. To date, there is no evidence of recreational use of CBD or any public health related problems associated with the use of pure CBD."

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British Pharmacological Society Journal

The international workshop that brought together the research published in this cannabinoid themed issue of The British Journal of Pharmacology is nearly a decade old. However, the articles give the reader a sense of the questions the scientific community deems relevant to understanding cannabinoids.

More at Cannabinoids in Biology and Medicine

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