John 10:10 I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.

 

                      Can Pot Extend Ted Kennedy's Life? Too Bad It's Illegal
Scientific studies indicate that marijuana can halt the spread of numerous cancer cells, including the type that Kennedy suffers from.

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By Paul Armentano, NORML

May 26, 2008

In the 14 years I've worked in marijuana law reform, few events have struck me as so needlessly tragic as the federal government's consistent and deliberate stifling of medical cannabis research. Nowhere is the Fed's refusal to allow this science more overt and inhumane than as it pertains to the investigation of cannabinoids as anti-cancer agents, particularly in the treatment of gliomas.

As noted in today's wire stories regarding Sen. Edward Kennedy's diagnosis, glioma is an aggressive form of cancer that affects an estimated 10,000 Americans annually. Standard treatments for the cancer include radiation and chemotherapy, though neither procedure has proven particularly effective -- the disease kills approximately half its victims within one year and all within three years.

But what if there was an alternative treatment for gliomas that could selectively target the cancer while leaving healthy cells intact? And what if federal bureaucrats were aware of this treatment, but deliberately withheld this information from the public?

Sadly, the above questions are not hypothetical. As I originally wrote in a 2004 essay for Alternet.org, titled Pot Shows Promise as a Cancer Cure":

In fact, the first experiment documenting pot's anti-tumor effects took place in 1974 at the Medical College of Virginia at the behest of the U.S. government. The results of that study, reported in an Aug. 18, 1974, Washington Post newspaper feature, were that marijuana's psychoactive component, THC, "slowed the growth of lung cancers, breast cancers and a virus-induced leukemia in laboratory mice, and prolonged their lives by as much as 36 percent."

Despite these favorable preliminary findings, U.S. government officials banished the study and refused to fund any follow-up research until conducting a similar -- though secret -- clinical trial in the mid-1990s. That study, conducted by the U.S. National Toxicology Program to the tune of $2 million, concluded that mice and rats administered high doses of THC over long periods had greater protection against malignant tumors than untreated controls.

However, rather than publicize their findings, government researchers shelved the results, which only became public after a draft copy of its findings were leaked in 1997 to a medical journal which in turn forwarded the story to the national media. (John 3:20 For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved. 1 Timothy 4:3 commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth.)

In the years since the completion of the National Toxicology trial, the U.S. government has yet to fund a single additional study examining the drug's potential anti-cancer properties. Is this a case of federal bureaucrats putting politics over the health and safety of patients? You be the judge. (Luke 11:52 Woe unto you, lawyers! for ye have taken away the key of knowledge: ye entered not in yourselves, and them that were entering in ye hindered. [Saints See: It’s time to wake up and see that cannabis can help others - Research on cannabis (marijuana) has been suppressed in this country for more than 35 years. The only research that was allowed after the Shafer Commission report told President Nixon that marijuana possession should not justify criminalizing the American public, was research to prove it was harmful. Since they couldn’t find anything harmful, they didn’t allow any at all. In the past decade doctors in Spain, Italy and Israel have published dozens of medical research papers, showing that components of cannabis actually stop the growth of cancer tumors and in many cases reduce them to nothing, with no damage to living cells. A human trial has even been conducted on the exact same kind of tumor as Sen. Ted Kennedy’s with great results. This information is readily available on the Internet, yet our government sees fit to continue its war against cannabis and therefore its war on patients.

land_of_free2.jpg (7010 bytes)Ted Kennedy may be cured of this brain cancer, but it won’t happen in the United States of America. He would have to “volunteer” for “research” in another country. That makes it a hard decision for a U.S. senator. The most unfortunate thing of all is that we have millions of people in this country who could benefit from this herb we call a drug, yet they will go to jail if they use it. This is a plant that is proven less harmful than alcohol or tobacco, less addictive than caffeine and more beneficial than many, many dangerous pharmaceutical drugs.] 1 Timothy 6:10 For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, Ezekiel 47:12 the leaf thereof for medicine. [Saints See: All Over but the Litigation for Merck - Even as Merck seeks closure on its Vioxx nightmare by paying $4.85 billion to tens of thousands of plaintiffs who took the painkiller--not that it did anything wrong--the bad ink continues. Articles about Vioxx, withdrawn from the market in 2004 for doubling stroke and heart attack risk, in the April 16, 2008 JAMA charge Merck disguised mortality data it submitted from Vioxx trials to the FDA and wrote the scientific papers itself it claimed were penned by doctors. Merck transposed its own clinical study results of 34 deaths in the Vioxx group and 12 in the placebo group to 29 deaths in the Vioxx group and 17 in the placebo group when it submitted data to the FDA write Bruce Psaty, MD, PhD; and Richard Kronmal, PhD, professors at the University of Washington in JAMA. Worse, Merck knew as early as 2001 that participants in Vioxx trials who had Alzheimer's disease were dying at three times the rate of those taking placebo.

heroin_bayer2.gif (18661 bytes)Articles extolling Vioxx as the new, Super Aspirin were also a product of Merck machinations says another article in JAMA. They were actually ghostwritten from Merck's own research with doctors' "guest author" names attached as an afterthought write Joseph S. Ross, MD, MHS, Kevin P. Hill, MD, MHS and two other authors on the basis of 250 court documents they examined. Fosamax, Merck's osteoporosis drug, was already facing more than 100 suits for causing osteonecrosis of the jaw or jaw bone death--added as a warning to its label in 2005--when a new wrinkle emerged. Women who took Fosamax were twice as likely to have atrial fibrillation, a chronically irregular heartbeat, as those who didn't says an article in the April 28, 2008 Archives of Internal Medicine, echoing a New England Journal of Medicine article last year. And Singulair, Merck's allergy and asthma pill, is under FDA review for possible suicide side effects. But even as jokes appear about the number of Merck staffers required to change a light bulb--10 to call it a breakthrough, 10 to conference call Wall Street, 10 to suppress evidence it's been done before and more safely and one to change the bulb--Merck is repeating its mistakes.] Revelation 9:21 Neither repented they of their murders, nor of their sorceries,)

Fortunately, in the past 10 years scientists overseas have generously picked up where U.S. researchers so abruptly left off, reporting that cannabinoids can halt the spread of numerous cancer cells -- including prostate cancer, breast cancer, lung cancer, pancreatic cancer, and in one human clinical trial, brain cancer.

Writing earlier this year in the journal Expert Review of Neurotherapeutics, Italian researchers reiterated, "(C)annabinoids have displayed a great potency in reducing glioma tumor growth either in vitro or in animal experimental models. (They) appear to be selective antitumoral agents as they kill glioma cells without affecting the viability of nontransformed counterparts." Not one mainstream media outlet reported their findings. Perhaps now they'll pay better attention.

What possible advancements in the treatment of cancer may have been achieved over the past 34 years had U.S. government officials chosen to advance -- rather than suppress -- clinical research into the anti-cancer effects of cannabis? It's a shame we have to speculate; it's even more tragic that the families of Senator Kennedy and thousands of others must suffer while we do. (1 Timothy 4:1 doctrines of devils;)

Courtesy Alternet

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