Cannabis based drugs could be next gen painkillers

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cannabis, marijuana
Epidiolex will be used to treat two rare and severe forms of epilepsy

Indian scientists work on drugs using weed based chemicals; clinical trials to start soon

Earlier this year at an event, world renowned oncologist and author Siddhartha Mukherjee has spoken about the struggle of finding morphine in India while his father lay in pain, dying.

Morphine is essential for end stage pain in cancers and some other diseases but is notoriously difficult to procure in India because of fears about its addictive potential. Indian researchers are now working on derivatives of yet another potentially addictive substance cannabis to develop drugs.

Scientists at the Indian Institute of Integrative Medicine say that the drug created from tetrahydrocannabinol and cannabidiol, both derivatives of cannabis, can treat epilepsy and cancer pain.

Animal studies have already been carried out and the results have been positive. The “pill” is now ready to go into human clinical trials

Animal studies have already been carried out and the results have been positive. The “pill” is now ready to go into human clinical trials.

A randomised clinical trial will be carried out at the Tata Memorial Centre in Mumbai. The patients will be given this drug along with approved treatment to look at how it affects pain management. The epilepsy trials will be carried out at AIIMS New Delhi. Ratan Tata backed cancer research startup Bombay Hemp Company is CSIR’s funding partner for the two research projects.

Addictive substances and their therapeutic uses have gained currency of late the world over. Several countries already allow use of medical marijuana while others have legalised substances previously considered contraband.

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