There is an ever-growing increase in the number of cancer patients and some kinds of cancers have really low survival rates.
Pancreatic cancer is one of these with a survival rate of only 8.5% within 5 years from diagnosis, according to data given by NCI (National Cancer Institute) in the US. It also suggests that by this year end there will be nearly 55,440 more cases registered for pancreatic cancer.
The situation is alarming and studies are on to find the cure. One such study done on mice suggests that the use of a compound found naturally in cannabis can help in extending the lifespan of the patients.
CBD (Cannabidiol): An Encouraging Breakthrough
- The treatment for pancreatic cancer is either a surgical resection wherein the affected tissue is removed or chemotherapy. But, being really aggressive, nearly 80% of the patients die within the first year of the diagnosis itself. Using CBD will help extend the lives of pancreatic cancer patients. This inference was drawn after the experiment was performed on mice. Those treated with it had a median average survival of 56 days, while those on chemo alone survived 23.5 days. Those left untreated, however, collapsed in 20 days.
- Though CBD is one of the major ingredients found in the cannabis plant, it does not have any psychoactive effect. This means that unlike the active component found in cannabis, which is THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), it doesn’t lead to a person getting high.
- It is already a licensed medical product, which means with these results, the drug can quickly get a nod for human trials too. If the results are found encouraging in humans too, then it can be used for cancer treatment with approval from the authorities.
Pancreatic cancer has one of the worst outcomes of any type of cancer known so far. The low survival rates have also not changed in the past 40 years. This is because no major breakthrough has happened in its treatment and only palliative care is available. There is an urgent need for finding a cure or perhaps improving the survival rate. The doctors and researchers all across the globe are working on it. This is the first time something encouraging has been found after testing it on mice. These mice having pancreatic cancer were given chemo using the drug Gemcitabine.