Scientists killed cancer cells in a lab using a compound found in cannabis.
Like most plants, cannabis contains chemical substances called flavonoids. Researchers from Harvard’s Dana-Farber Cancer Institute found that a specific cannabis flavonoid, FBL-03G, demonstrated “significant therapy potential” in treating pancreatic cancer.
In a lab experiment, researchers found FBL-03G was effective at killing both local and metastatic pancreatic cancer cells. The findings were published in the journal Frontiers on Oncology in July 2019.
“The most significant conclusion is that tumor-targeted delivery of flavonoids, derived from cannabis, enabled both local and metastatic tumor cell kill, significant increasing survival from pancreatic cancer,” Assistant Professor Wilfred Ngwa, PhD told Yahoo Lifestyle. “This has major significance, given that pancreatic cancer is particularly refractory to current therapies.”
Pancreatic cancer makes up approximately 3% of all cancer diagnosed in the U.S. It has a five-year survival rate of 9% and is predicted to be the third-leading cause of cancer-related death by 2020.