UK to test Sativex to treat brain tumors

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Sativex, a THC: CBD oral spray, is going to be tested for an upcoming study to treat an aggressive type of cancer known as glioblastoma.

The Brain Tumor Charity, an organization that seeks to increase research to find cures for brain tumors, is seeking £ 450,000 to fund the Sativex trial, which will be led by Professor Susan Short of the University of Leeds.

“We believe that Sativex can kill glioblastoma tumor cells, and that it can be particularly effective when given with chemotherapy with temozolomide,” she said. “It could therefore enhance the effects of chemotherapy by stopping the growth of these tumors, which would allow patients to live longer.” This is what we want to test in this study ”.

The study will include the recruitment of 232 patients in early 2022, chosen from around 15 different hospitals and cancer centers in the UK. To study the effectiveness of Sativex, researchers will give two-thirds of patients Sativex, and the remaining third a placebo.

Approved by the National Health Service (NHS) from the UK in 2009, Sativex contains both THC and CBD. It has been authorized in France since 2013, for patients with multiple sclerosis, but has never been distributed in pharmacies for lack of agreement on the price of the spray between the distributor and the French authorities. The drug is known for its ability to reduce pain, inflammation, and anxiety.

According to Guardian, around 2,200 people are diagnosed with glioblastoma each year in the UK. It is an aggressive cancer that is difficult to treat successfully and almost always comes back, even if other treatments such as surgery, radiation therapy or chemotherapy are used. Typically, patients who are diagnosed do not live longer than 18 months.

“We hope this trial may pave the way for a new, long-awaited lifeline that could provide glioblastoma patients with precious additional months to live and create memories with loved ones,” said David Jenkinson, Acting CEO of the Brain Tumor Charity. “We know there is significant interest in our community on the potential activity of cannabinoids in the treatment of glioblastoma, and we are truly delighted that this first global trial here in the UK can help accelerate those responses. “

The father of Tom Daley’s 10-meter synchronized diving Olympian who won a gold medal in Tokyo last week, has died of a brain tumor. Mr. Daley recently made a video touting the potential of this trial and what it could mean for those who are currently in pain, and their families.

“We are reaching out to all of you, individual heroes and supporters, to help fund this groundbreaking trial,” he said in the video. “When you donate, you receive a link for your badge of honor on social media. Join our community; spread the word and help us pave the way to beat brain tumors. “

Sativex, a potential savior

Glioblastoma is considered a common, devastating condition for patients like Stephen Lee. He participated in an early phase of the trial which was conducted in 2015.

“My diagnosis was very sudden and was one of those days you never forget. Having had to leave work early with a severe headache and a throbbing pain in my right eye, my wife insisted that we go straight to the hospital after what my brother had been through, ”he said. at BBC News.

He is not sure whether or not he received Sativex or a placebo at the time, but he is eager to see what the outcome will be. “This new trial is very important because it will give people hope that there may be life beyond the diagnosis of glioblastoma, and that there are other treatments being tried to help them live.” their life. “

Between today and August 10, donations for this trial will be collected by The Big Give. “If the result of this trial is positive, it could pave the way for a new treatment option that would allow people with recurrent glioblastoma to spend precious time with their loved ones,” wrote The Brain Tumor Charity on its website.

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