Study Finds Another Use for Marijuana

Study Finds Another Use for Marijuana
Posted by CN Staff on October 12, 2006 at 09:38:21 PT
By Krystal Baugher 
Source: University Leader
Kansas -- Marijuana advocates say the herb can treat another serious illness. They claim the active ingredient THC has been shown to help fight Alzheimer’s disease. About 4.5 million Americans suffer from the disease which gradually destroys memory. According to Fox News, cases of Alzheimer’s disease are expected to triple over the next 50 years.People with Alzheimer’s have an enzyme in their brain called acetylcholinesterase or AChE for short, that does two things: first it accelerates the formation of abnormal protein clumps in the brain, and second, it breaks down a brain chemical that is linked to memory and learning.
The main ingredient in marijuana, THC, inhibits this enzyme. THC could completely prevent the formation of abnormal clumping unlike the two medications already used to fight Alzheimer’s – donepezil and tacrine which only reduce clumping by 22 and 7 percent, respectively.Medical marijuana is legal in 11 states: Alaska, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Maine, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington. Marijuana is used to treat not only Alzheimer’s but cancer, anorexia, AIDS, chronic pain, glaucoma, arthritis, and migraines to name a few. Most states with legalization laws allow 1 to 3 ounces to be on a person; people in California on the other hand can possess up to 8 ounces.The ability to possess medical marijuana is important, according to the Alzheimer’s Association fact sheet, “Finding a treatment that could delay the onset of Alzheimer’s disease by five years could reduce the number of individuals with the disease by nearly 50 percent after 50 years.” Currently there is no treatment available that can cure the disease, only medications that can slow down the deterioration process. THC is considered better at suppressing the disease than any currently approved prescription drug.Controversy about the legalization of marijuana has been a hot-topic in recent years, especially due to the medical discoveries that have developed over this time. “I see nothing wrong with legalizing medical marijuana; doctors give out prescription drugs to patients that other people can’t use on a daily basis, using marijuana as a medical drug is the same thing,” Sarah Piper said.Others have a negative view of medical marijuana, “Based on current evidence, I believe that marijuana is a dangerous drug and that there are less dangerous medicines offering the same relief from pain and other medical symptoms said,” Bill Frist, M.D.“[Marijuana] can relieve certain types of pain, nausea, vomiting and other symptoms caused by such illnesses as multiple sclerosis, cancer and AIDS—or by the harsh drugs sometimes used to treat them. And it can do so with remarkable safety. Indeed, marijuana is less toxic than many of the drugs that physicians prescribe every day,” Joycelyn Elders, former U.S. Surgeon General said.The controversy will continue, but scientific evidence has proven that marijuana can help patients that have been diagnosed with severe illnesses. Right now, marijuana is the most useful drug to patients with Alzheimer’s in comparison to the two prescription drugs available. For more information about the medical marijuana debate visit: http://www.medicalmarijuanaprocon.orgSource: University Leader, The (KS Edu)Author: Krystal Baugher Published: Thursday, October 12, 2006Copyright: 2006 The University LeaderContact: leader scatcat.fhsu.eduWebsite: Articles:MJ's Active Ingredient May Improve Memory's Benefits Explored Helps in Fighting Alzheimer's, Study Says
Home Comment Email Register Recent Comments Help

Comment #1 posted by FoM on October 12, 2006 at 11:39:03 PT
PDF of The Study
[ Post Comment ]

Post Comment