Researchers Study Neuroprotective Properties in Cannabis

With more states opting to legalize the sale of medical marijuana, researchers are taking a closer look at the use of cannabis to treat chronic illnesses.

Dr. Manny Alvarez, senior managing health editor of, recently sat down with the Medicine Hunter, Chris Kilham, to find out how it’s being studied.

Dr. Manny: Now from the medical marijuana perspective, as far as the treatment of chronic illnesses, what is it about cannabis that makes it that special?

Medicine Hunter: Well, it seems that there are primarily two things – there’s the THC, that’s what people associated with getting high. And that appears to have a saliatory effect on the eyes in case of glaucoma. For people who are suffering from chemotherapy and can’t eat, it helps to get their appetite back. And we also know that it is a potent pain reliever – and science on that goes back to the 1890s.

But there’s another agent in cannabis that is getting more attention now, and that is called cannabidiol. And this is something that you can swallow by the bucket-full, and it won’t get you high at all. But it appears to have profound nerve-protective and brain-enhancing properties. And interestingly enough, it also induces an anti-anxiety effect.

So this appears to be a very important agent, perhaps useful in the treatment of neurodegenerative disorders.

DM: Are they extracting that particular chemical off the marijuana?

MH: There seem to be two pathways that people are taking. You’ve got G.W. pharmaceuticals in Britain that has come out with a whole cannabis fluid spray. You’ve got people also isolating cannabidiol and playing with that in the lab.

I don’t know how this is all going to settle out – I mean, as a whole-plant person, I’m inclined toward the whole extract. But it does appear that this may also have anti-cancer properties, and that’s very intriguing.

DM: Is marijuana addictive?

MH: I would say that people can absolutely become dependent upon it. But not physiologically addictive. And, as you know, that’s not just parsing terms – I mean physiological addiction, you go through very grave withdrawal.

But people can become dependent on it just as they can on any substance.

DM: Tell me about this study in the American Journal of Pediatrics talking about pregnant Jamaican women and the use of pot.

MH: Melanie Dreher, who is the dean of nursing at Rush Medical Center in Chicago, did a study in Jamaica. It was actually published in the American Journal of Pediatrics in 1994, but now it’s re-circulating because of all the interest in the neuroprotective properties.

Basically, she studied women during their entire pregnancy, and then studied the babies about a year after birth. And what she studied was a group of women who did smoke cannabis during pregnancy and those who didn’t. She expected to see a difference in the babies as far as birth weight and neuro tests, but there was no difference whatsoever. The differences that the researchers did notice, that are unexplained and kind of curious are that the babies of the women who had smoked cannabis — and we’re talking about daily use during their pregnancy — socialized more quickly, made eye contact more quickly and were easier to engage.

We don’t know why this is so, but all the old saws of smoking during pregnancy will result in low birth weight did not show up — at least in the Jamaican study. In U.S. studies where we’ve seen a similar investigation, women have concurrently been abusing alcohol and other drugs as well.

Alvarez said it’s interesting to note that there may be neuroprotective properties present in cannabis and the cannibidiol extract, but that smoking of any kind in pregnant women is discouraged.

More research is needed when it comes to medical marijuana, he added.

– Article from FOX News.



  1. Anonymous on

    And god said. Really who heard him? and what proof do we have. People we need to leave god and religion out of the conversation. For good. God and religion are just theories from uneducated men. Marijuana is very real unlike god.

  2. Cannabis4MSinBC on

    Hey, my brain works, quite well in fact. So well that I just wrapped up a very unique pontification with my friend Stew, the man sized rabbit. We got to wondering, just like our wandering minds like to do. We fell upon the subject of psychosis, specifically upon how the criteria of diagnosis for that mental disorder would qualify everyone here psychotic.

    According to the Canadian Mental Health Organization . . .

    – experience confused thoughts (Mostly with Purple Kush.)
    – feel their thoughts have sped up or slowed down (Indica or Sativa?)
    – feel preoccupied with unusual ideas (The 50 foot Bong Rip of Doom!)
    – believe that others can manipulate their thoughts; or that they can manipulate the of others (Staring contest? It’s on!)
    – perceive voices or visions that no one else can hear or see (A.K.A., Trippin’ Ballz.)
    – feel ‘changed’ in some way (‘changed’ or high? Mmmm, tasty synonym antonyms…)
    – act differently than they usually would (Only when I’m this high to ride!)

    The really funny part of it all, and my rabbit and I looked this up, that if I were to walk down the street talking to him and no one could see him because he’s invisible, I’d be considered psychotic for conversing with my imaginary friend. But Stew, the start rabbit that he is, he told me to start calling him God or Jesus or Mother Mary or any of those names for the characters in that really popular old fantasy novel, the holy something or other. Christ, I so wish I could remember the name to that book, the author and publisher too.

    Anyways, seems that if I go around talking to my invisible friend God (though it’s really Stew), no one minds that. And when I used to blame stuff on Stew, like that lamp getting knocked over, now I can say God’s responsible for it, everything, including that broken lamp. All the nice stuff too, the things Stew (God) and I did together, the smiles and the laughter and the joy, now it’s God (Stew) who’s to thank.

    Now if you’ll pardon me, one of my G.I. Joe’s went on leave, met this girl Barbie, they decided to try some of that devil weed Marijuana, now he’s gone, can’t find him anywhere, and now I’m Dremeling out a sticky abortion baby fetus from her hard plastic abs.

    Now that my stint of psychotic script hath been written to partially rhyme, I must ask if BC_Budman’s divine interference is genius or insanity? He did, with just few weird words, overshadow one of the most poignant cannabis themed articles written to date, the one that says you won’t become some brain dead bum if you blaze up. Religion however, sucks the IQ right out of you, and there’s even scientific research to show it too.

    PM me BC_Budman, I’ll send those articles your way, though you don’t have to read them of course, just scatter then atop your coffee table, make it look like you do.

  3. Anonymous on

    are you on crack or something?!

  4. BC_Budman on

    Keep your religious delusions to yourself. You seem to be brain-dead from sucking in all that religious crap. I’m just stating this because of my right to my own beliefs, and of course, logic. Your brain doesn’t seem to work at all.

  5. BC_Budman on

    Keep your religious delusions to yourself. You seem to be brain-dead from sucking in all that religious crap. I’m just stating this because of my right to my own beliefs, and of course, logic. Your brain doesn’t seem to work at all.

  6. Anonymous on

    So your points are:
    – whoever believes in legalizing a harmless plant doesn’t believe in god
    – whoever believes that people should be allowed to smoke pot in peace, are going to hell cuz they don’t believe in god
    – prostitution is like smoking weed, and you’ll eventually get an abortion.
    – fighting for your right of choice destroys religious views, so you’ll go to hell

    you are right, i don’t believe in god, well the regular “man with beard smiling down until you do something bad then he sends you to an eternal hell where you’ll burn and scream in pain for all eternity”(exaggeration, but not far off).. God is much more likely the collective consciousness of all human beings, we are divine, our bodies weren’t created in god’s image-our mind’s where.

    you wanna talk a waste of a life? many people could argue that religion is the most extreme catalyst in this case-especially in your case of the radical bible thumpers (or ten commandment movie thumper, whichever way you get your religious views). just like the right to smoke marijuana freedom of choice, so is religion, and religious views–so quit fucking trying to preach to us, the world’s not listening anymore to the radical people shouting god’s “word”

    now i’m going to go smoke a big fatty, meditate, and be closer to god than you ever will be

  7. john Ellis on

    WOW can’t belive in god if you belive in the tree of life what a nutter.
    The bible ends with the tree of life it began with the tree of life, the tree of life is cannabis.

    modern christians are all nutters they have lost there way there heratige thier roots.

    We fight to bring about the healing of nations, the gift of the leaves (which GW just got cloned) THCa and CBDa sequenced geneticaly..
    in 1998 I am the alpha and the omega I have eyes of fire.. each year has brought us closer to the healing of nations the 14th year passes us now 8 to go the 13th saw the rise of the horns of the lamb from the green of the earth this sees the fall of the nations as the great city turns its back. now the scythe begins to reap.

  8. Simon on

    I disagree with this entirely! I most certainly believe in God and I happen to use Cannabis occasionally as a relaxant as well as a main source of food! I’m a firm believer that cannabis should be completely legal.

    Genesis 1:29 And God said, “Behold, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is on the face of all the earth, and every tree with seed in its fruit. You shall have them for food.”

    So it would seem to me that you are speaking based on your own opinion and not based on the knowledge which is provided in the word of God. Cannabis is one of the healthiest plants to be used for food on the planet. It contains all the essential amino-acids that your body needs to create its own proteins. Do some research about this miracle God given plant before you begin to demonize it. 🙂

  9. Anonymous on


  10. Anonymous on

    you’re quite insane to compare a plant to prostitution.

  11. Anonymous on

    You dont believe in God if you believe in marijuana legalization or illegalizing of marijuana.

    For the time wasted you’ll never get back in this life or after your dead.
    Fighting over this non sense, destroys religious views. Just like prostitution creates this wierd mentality. That who ever do it be nasty with themself but around other people pretend to have nothing to do with prostitution. Whether it is prostitutes or politians screwing them.

    People waste time fighting over marijuana.

    Yet is a plant, let do it and who ever doesn’t want to do, don’t even look at it or those doing it.

    But prostitution causes disease, people stay dirty all day having sex.

    The babies being aborted in abortions.

    Is like the pharoah’s son who died. In the ten commandments movie.