Cannabigerol (CBG) & Chemotherapy Treatments

Research Suggests Cannabigerol Could Alleviate Some Of The Strains Of Chemotherapy Treatments

When looking for something to help with the sheer bodily stress caused by chemotherapy, cannabinoids have been favoured by many due to their unique properties of pain-relief, stress reduction and appetite stimulation. Below we’ll talk about some of the research around CBG and what it means.

CBG For Appetite Stimulation And Slowing Weight Loss

Muscle wasting, anorexia and general disruption to the metabolism are all common side effects of chemotherapy. In fact, the actual dosing of chemotherapy is a fine line between removing more of the tumor, and compromising the quality of life for the patient. No point curing the cancer if the patient can’t eat or walk and wastes away.

As such, there are treatments for chemotherapy patients to help stimulate appetite and reduce weight loss. However, recent research has found that the cannabinoid CBG could provide really beneficial effects to counteract the weight loss associated with chemo.

CBG has previously had research suggesting it’s appetite stimulating properties. However, in 2019 further research in the field looked at whether this increase in appetite was enough to offset muscle wastage and weight loss in rats suffering from metabolism dysregulation caused by the commonly used chemotherapy drug, cisplatin.

The results of the study found that the rats that were given CBG had an increased food intake, and additionally the weight loss caused from the cisplatin treatment was 2.6% in 72 hours compared to 6.3% weight loss in 72 hours in the placebo group.

CBG & Antitumor Effects

Cannabinoids like CBG could soon have a recognised role not just in the palliative care side of cancer treatment, but soon as a conjoined treatment method with existing chemotherapies due to the discovery of its ability to slow down the replication of cancer cells, and sometimes even remove them.

Research on the antitumor potential of CBG has been shown in research before, such as back in 1996 when this report came out claiming CBG was able to inhibit the growth of melanoma cells on the skin of mice.

In 2014 a paper published in Carcinogenesis claimed that CBG promoted apoptosis and slowed cell growth in colorectal cancer cells. Apoptosis is a term used to mean programmed cell death and it’s the bodies way of destroying cells safely. The study talks about how CBG may be more effective than other cannabinoids in the treatment of colorectal cancer due to the fact CBG doesn’t bind to CB2 receptors, which most cannabinoids do. CB2 receptors have been linked to actually progressing colorectal cancer, and CBG’s different mechanism in the body could be the key.

Further studies in 2018 found that it’s not just CBG that has an effect on colorectal cancers, but also CBGA. The study found that THCA-rich compounds were fairly effective at removing colon cancer cells, however when combined with CBGA the cocktail showed significantly improved removal effect. The paper noted that while CBG and THC showed cytotoxicity to cancer cells, the acidic forms THCA and CBGA showed less interaction with healthy colon cells, indicating a potentially more direct treatment to cancer cells with less damage to surrounding healthy tissue.

This study further highlights the beneficial entourage effect of cannabinoids that can help amplify effects on the body with complementary interactions between cannabinoids.

Conclusions

The research on CBG is fresh and exciting but also in its infancy, as such we always recommend that if you are curious about taking any cannabinoid formulation, you always consult your physician beforehand as drug-drug interactions are important.

Regardless, we’re excited to hear more research on the subject as further progress on uncovering the power of cannabinoids and the entourage effect could have the potential to help millions one day.

References

  • Brierley, D.I., Samuels, J., Duncan, M. et al. (2016). Cannabigerol is a novel, well-tolerated appetite stimulant in pre-satiated rats. Psychopharmacology 233, 3603–3613.
  • Brierley, D.I., Harman, J.R., Giallourou, N., Leishman, E., Roashan, A.E., Mellows, B.A., Bradshaw, H.B., Swann, J.R., Patel, K., Whalley, B.J. and Williams, C.M. (2019). Chemotherapy‐induced cachexia dysregulates hypothalamic and systemic lipoamines and is attenuated by cannabigerol. Journal of cachexia, sarcopenia and muscle10(4), 844-859.
  • Baek, S., Du Han, S., Yook, C.N. et al. (1996). Synthesis and antitumor activity of cannabigerol. Arch. Pharm. Res. 19, 228–230. 
  • Borrelli, F., Pagano, E., Romano, B., Panzera, S., Maiello, F., Coppola, D., De Petrocellis, L., Buono, L., Orlando, P. and Izzo, A.A. (2014). Colon carcinogenesis is inhibited by the TRPM8 antagonist cannabigerol, a Cannabis-derived non-psychotropic cannabinoid. Carcinogenesis35(12), 2787-2797.
  • Nallathambi, R., Mazuz, M., Namdar, D., Shik, M., Namintzer, D., Vinayaka, A. C., Ion, A., Faigenboim, A., Nasser, A., Laish, I., Konikoff, F. M., & Koltai, H. (2018). Identification of Synergistic Interaction Between Cannabis-Derived Compounds for Cytotoxic Activity in Colorectal Cancer Cell Lines and Colon Polyps That Induces Apoptosis-Related Cell Death and Distinct Gene Expression. Cannabis and cannabinoid research3(1), 120–135.

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