melanoma skin cancer cannabis
melanoma skin cancer cannabis

Melanoma Diagnosis is Skyrocketing and Cannabis May Now Be Part of a Treatment Solution for Many Patients

Cannabis may have special cannabinoids that help combat melanoma skin cancer!

Posted by:
Joseph Billions on Wednesday Mar 13, 2024

melanoma skin cancer marijuana

A recent in-vitro investigation has unveiled the potential of cannabis extract in slowing down the proliferation of melanoma cells and enhancing their apoptotic rate.


The mechanism of programmed cell death produced by a particular cannabis extract known as cannabinoid PHEC-66 was investigated in a study led by academics from Charles Darwin University (CDU) and the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT). The effects of this extract on melanoma cells were carefully examined. MGC Pharmaceuticals in Australia created this concentrated formulation.


According to research that was partially funded by MGC Pharmaceuticals Ltd. in Australia and published in the journal Cells, the cannabis extract may have the ability to interact with receptors on particular types of melanoma cells, which might make it useful as an adjuvant treatment for malignant melanoma. To fully evaluate its safety and effectiveness, however, more preclinical research is necessary.


Understanding Melanoma and its Resistance to Traditional Treatments


Melanomas, arising from melanocytes in the epidermis, constitute only a small portion, approximately 6%, of skin cancers. Yet, they account for over 80% of skin cancer-related fatalities.


This malignancy exhibits a pronounced tendency for metastasis, forming tumors locally and in distant locations while displaying resistance to conventional therapies.


Currently, treatment options for metastatic melanoma are scant. However, emerging evidence suggests that certain naturally occurring compounds derived from cannabis strains and plants, including polyphenols, flavonoids, and terpenes, harbor anticancer properties potentially advantageous in melanoma management.


Prior research has illustrated that activating CB1 and CB2 receptors with plant-derived compounds can impede early tumor growth across various cancers, operating as mediators that initiate diverse molecular pathways.


In this study, the cannabis extract PHEC-66 was observed to hinder the proliferation and migration of melanoma cells through interaction with CB1 and CB2 receptors within the endocannabinoid system.


To affirm these observations, melanoma cells were exposed to CB1 and CB2 antagonists to inhibit these receptors. This was conducted to ascertain if blocking CB1 or CB2 receptors would influence PHEC-66's efficacy on cell viability. The results demonstrated a noticeable increase in cell viability among melanoma cells.


Specifically, researchers scrutinized how PHEC-66 interacts with its receptors in the presence of selective blockers, AM251 and AM630, which inhibit CB1 and CB2 receptors, respectively. By utilizing these blockers, it was corroborated that the reduction in growth induced by PHEC-66 primarily hinges on CB2 receptors across all tested melanoma cells.


"These findings suggest that the CB1 receptor may play a minor role in PHEC-66 activity on MM96L [metastatic melanoma] cells, whereas CB2 antagonist significantly countered PHEC-66 cytotoxicity in all examined cell lines," as per the study's findings.


Potential Therapeutic Implications of Cannabis Compounds in Melanoma Treatment


An exciting new area of cancer research is the study of cannabis chemicals' potential therapeutic benefits in the treatment of melanoma. In preclinical investigations, these naturally occurring substances—such as polyphenols, flavonoids, and terpenes—found in cannabis plants have shown noteworthy capacities to impede melanoma cell growth and induce programmed cell death, or apoptosis.


In contrast to traditional chemotherapy drugs, chemicals produced from cannabis provide the possibility of a more focused and maybe less harmful method of treating melanoma. Because of their unique characteristics and modes of action, these substances might provide patients with complementary or effective alternative therapy, thereby reducing the unfavorable side effects of conventional medicines.


Moreover, mixing several cannabis components may have synergistic effects that improve their therapeutic efficiency against melanoma. By customizing treatment plans to take advantage of these synergies, melanoma therapy may become more individualized, enhancing patient outcomes and even quality of life. The investigation of cannabis chemicals in the treatment of melanoma shows great potential for developing the area of oncology and enhancing patient care, even if more study is required to completely comprehend the complexities of their processes and to improve dose tactics.


Investigating the Role of Endocannabinoid System Receptors in Melanoma Cell Response to PHEC-66


The analysis of endocannabinoid system receptors in melanoma cell responses to PHEC-66 gives information on the complex molecular pathways underlying cannabis extracts' therapeutic benefits. The CB1 and CB2 receptors are key to our study because they play important roles in modulating the cellular response to cannabis.


By conducting targeted investigations on these receptors, researchers aimed to establish the specific roles that CB1 and CB2 antagonists play in the cytotoxicity that PHEC-66 produces. The findings suggest a complicated connection between melanoma cells and cannabinoid receptors, with CB2 receptors serving as the primary mediators of PHEC-66 activity in a range of cell types.


On top of that, specific blocking of CB1 and CB2 receptors with blockers like AM251 and AM630 has allowed for the discovery of significant new information on the unique effects of PHEC-66 on melanoma cell survival. Scientists want to enhance therapeutic methods and treatment outcomes for melanoma patients by determining the distinct roles played by CB1 and CB2 receptors in mediating the anti-tumour effects of cannabis extracts.


Understanding the Molecular Interplay between Cannabinoid Receptors and Melanoma Cells


Investigating the molecular interactions between melanoma cells and cannabinoid receptors provides important new understandings of the processes behind the therapeutic potential of cannabis extracts such as PHEC-66. The endocannabinoid system's CB1 and CB2 receptors, which are essential for controlling how cells react to cannabis, are at the center of this study.


To investigate the precise functions of CB1 and CB2 antagonists in mediating the cytotoxic effects of PHEC-66 on melanoma cells, researchers have carried well focused studies. These investigations have shown a complicated link between the behavior of melanoma cells and cannabinoid receptors, with CB2 receptors appearing as important mediators of the action of PHEC-66 in various melanoma cell lines.


Additionally, by using certain antagonists like AM251 and AM630 to specifically block CB1 and CB2 receptors, researchers have learned important information about how PHEC-66 affects melanoma cell survival differently. These results open the door to future-focused and successful treatment interventions by providing a greater knowledge of the molecular interactions between cannabis chemicals and melanoma cells.


Bottom Line


The investigation into cannabis extracts, particularly PHEC-66, for melanoma treatment, offers promising prospects in innovative cancer therapies, as evidenced by in-vitro studies indicating their potential to inhibit melanoma cell proliferation and induce programmed cell death. Delving into the intricate molecular interplay between cannabinoid receptors and melanoma cells sheds light on the mechanisms underlying the therapeutic effects of these compounds, with CB1 and CB2 receptors emerging as key mediators of PHEC-66 activity. While further research is needed to elucidate therapeutic implications and refine treatment strategies fully, the findings suggest a hopeful future for utilizing cannabis compounds in melanoma therapy, intending to enhance patient outcomes and advance oncological care.





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