The plant Cannabis sativa L. has been used as an herbal remedy for centuries and is the most important source of phytocannabinoids. The endocannabinoid system (ECS) consists of receptors, endogenous ligands (endocannabinoids) and metabolizing enzymes, and plays an important role in different physiological and pathological processes. Phytocannabinoids and synthetic cannabinoids can interact with the components of ECS or other cellular pathways and thus affect the development/progression of diseases, including cancer. In cancer patients, cannabinoids have primarily been used as a part of palliative care to alleviate pain, relieve nausea and stimulate appetite.
New Mexico was the first state to list post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) as a condition for the use of medical cannabis. There are no published studies, other than case reports, of the effects of cannabis on PTSD symptoms. Cannabis is associated with reductions in PTSD symptoms in some patients, and prospective, placebo-controlled study is needed to determine efficacy of cannabis and its constituents in treating PTSD.
Structure-Activity Relationship of Cannabis Derived Compounds for the Treatment of Neuronal Activity-Related Diseases
Cannabis sativa active compounds are extensively studied for their therapeutic effects, beyond the well-known psychotropic activity. C. Sativais used to treat different medical indications, such as multiple sclerosis, spasticity, epilepsy, ulcerative colitis and pain. In this review, we will consider the structure-activity relationship (SAR) of cannabinoid compounds able to bind to cannabinoid receptors and act as therapeutic agents in neuronal diseases, e.g., Parkinson’s disease.
Medical cannabis research has become quite extensive, with indications ranging from glaucoma to chemotherapy-induced nausea. Despite increased interest in cannabis’ potential medical uses, research barriers, cannabis legislation, stigma, and lack of dissemination of data contribute to low adoption for some medical populations. Many who support the use of cannabis in palliative care do not recommend it as a treatment. These data suggest recommendations for healthcare providers and palliative care organizations.
Clinical research regarding the therapeutic benefits of cannabis (“marijuana”) has been almost non-existent in the United States since cannabis was given Schedule I status in the Controlled Substances Act of 1970. In order to discover the benefits and adverse effects perceived by medical cannabis patients, especially with regards to chronic pain, we hand-delivered surveys to one hundred consecutive patients who were returning for yearly re-certification for medical cannabis use in Hawai’i. Cannabis has shown extreme promise in the treatment of numerous medical problems and deserves to be released from the current Schedule I federal prohibition against research and prescription.
Neurodegenerative diseases are increasing in parallel to the lengthening of survival. The management of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and other dementias, Parkinson’s disease (PD) and PD-related disorders, and motor neuron diseases (MND), is mainly targeted to motor and cognitive impairment, with special care for vital functions such as breathing and feeding. Emerging evidences on the possible anti-nociceptive effects of cannabis or botulinum toxin might be available soon. Expert commentary: Pain needs to be better evaluated and fully considered in the global management of neurodegenerative disease because a more focused treatment may have a positive impact on the global burden of these devastating disorders.
The onset of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) in children is rising. Current treatment options are based on immunomodulatory therapy. Alternative treatment options are upcoming since they appear to be effective in individual patients. More research is needed on the efficacy and safety of cannabis in pediatric IBD. Studies are well underway, but until then the use of cannabis in pediatric IBD cannot be recommended.
Cannabinoid compounds include phytocannabinoids, endocannabinoids, and synthetics. The two primary phytocannabinoids are delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD), with CB1 receptors in the brain and peripheral tissue and CB2 receptors in the immune and hematopoietic systems. Gold standard clinical trials are limited; however, some studies have thus far shown evidence to support the use of cannabinoids for some cancer, neuropathic, spasticity, acute pain, and chronic pain conditions.
The cannabis plant has been known to humanity for centuries as a remedy for pain, diarrhea, and inflammation. Current research has shown cannabis to be a useful remedy for many diseases, including multiple sclerosis, dystonia, and chronic pain. Cannabinoids are used to improve food intake in anorexia of AIDS patients and to prevent vomiting due to cancer chemotherapy. We must not be blind to the opportunity offered to us by medical cannabis just because it is an illicit drug, nor should we be temped by the quick response of patients to the central effect of cannabis. More research is warranted to explore the full potential of cannabis as medicine.
Cannabis has been used to treat pain for thousands of years. However, since the early part of the 20th century, laws restricting cannabis use have limited its evaluation using modern scientific criteria. Over the last decade, the situation has started to change because of the increased availability of cannabis in the United States for either medical or recreational purposes, making it important to provide the public with accurate information as to the effectiveness of the drug for joint pain among other indications.