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Medical Cannabis News

New data reinforces the efficacy and safety profile of cannabis in Multiple Sclerosis Spasticity

London, UK; 2 October 2013: GW Pharmaceuticals plc (AIM: GWP, Nasdaq: GWPH, "GW") announced that data from new MS spasticity studies (clinical trial data, observational study data and registries data collection) is being presented today at the 29th Congress of the European Committee for Treatment and Research in Multiple Sclerosis (ECTRIMS) in Copenhagen, Denmark. The following press release was issued today by GW’s commercial partner, Almirall S.A., regarding the data presentation:

Copenhagen, Denmark, 2nd October 2013: Almirall S.A. (ALM) today announces the latest evidence with Sativex® (THC:CBD spray) from new MS spasticity studies (clinical trial data, observational study data and registries data collection). These data, presented today at the 29th Congress of the European Committee for Treatment and Research in Multiple Sclerosis (ECTRIMS) in Copenhagen, Denmark, show that Sativex® effectiveness is maintained long term with no additional safety concerns identified in clinical practice.

US Supreme Court Rejects Marijuana Reclassification Appeal

The US Supreme Court Monday declined to hear an appeal from medical marijuana advocacy groups who had challenged the DEA's decision to maintain marijuana's status as a Schedule I drug under the Controlled Substances Act, the category reserved for the most dangerous substances.

The court denied in summary order a petition for a writ of certiorari from the groups, led by Americans for Safe Access, which had sought Supreme Court review of a DC Circuit Court of Appeals decision upholding the DEA's ruling that a change in marijuana's classification required the Food and Drug Administration's recognition of acceptable medical uses for the drugs.

Cancer patients denied cannabis, made to do chemo instead

Several studies by top medical researchers, including from Harvard University, have concluded that the drug cannabis sativa (aka marijuana) provides more effective treatment for different types cancer than chemotherapy, without the severe side effects associated with the exposure to radiation.

But patients who seek this alternative form of therapy in Malta are denied access to cannabis-based products, on the pretext that the plant from which they are derived is listed on the Dangerous Drugs Ordinance of 1971.

One local patient, who asked not to be named, contacted MaltaToday to recount his own experiences after reading an article about the medical properties of marijuana in our Wednesday edition.

Study: Cannabis Increases Cognitive Function in Middle-Aged People

A study published by the American Journal of Epidemiology found that cannabis consumption may actually increase cognitive function in middle-aged individuals. The study also found the current illicit drug use – including LSD, magic mushrooms, cocaine and ecstasy – had no negative effect on a person’s cognitive function.

For the study, roughly 9,000 participants were surveyed at age 42 on their drug use, and then surveyed again at age 50, and were tested using various cognitive functioning tests. Researchers found that those who had a history of, and currently used illicit drugs (with cannabis by far being the most popular), performed either as well, or better in these test.

University Lecturer Receives Prestigious Neuroscience Award for Work With Cannabinoids

Dr. Eric Downer, an investigator and lecturer at the Department of Anatomy & Neuroscience at the University College Cork in Ireland, has become the newest recipient of the prestigious Neuroscience Ireland Early Career Investigator Award for his pioneering work using cannabinoids to treat multiple sclerosis.

‘It is an important time in the field of cannabinoid-based scientific research, particularly in terms of cannabis-based therapies associated with MS’, says Dr Downer, “My research has indicated that MS patient cells, and not cells isolated from healthy individuals, respond to cannabinoid therapy in terms of boosting protective intracellular signaling events.”

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