Scientist Reveal What Cannabis Does to Your Bone

A study from the Hebrew University and Tel Aviv University showed how a chemical in marijuana has strengthening effects on bone. The chemical is cannabinoid cannabidiol (CBD) and fastens bone healing without any psychotropic effects. This study was published in The Journal of Bone and Mineral Research.

 Researcher Yankel Gabet said that treatment of bones with CBD ensures strong, healed bones that will not break easily. It will help the maturation of collagenous matrix, which provides a new base for materialization of bone tissue.

The researchers used rats for this study by causing mild femoral fractures in them. They injected CBD to some of them, while the rest received CBD and tetrahydrocannabinol, which causes the marijuana high. They compared the two effects and found that rats injected with CBD showed the same results immaterial of THC addition.

The researchers also found that receptors in the body which react to cannabinoid compounds are not just located in the brain but are in the bones too. This helps the creation of bones and stops bone loss.

This study is a part of a project to find marijuana’s medical benefits and these new discoveries might motivate researchers to find the benefits of marijuana in treating osteoporosis and other bone diseases.

Gabet said that our body reacts to cannabis because we have receptors and compounds that are activated by compounds in marijuana.

These developments definitely show that cannabis has undeniable medicinal properties and that they can separate the clinical possibilities from the psycho-activity of cannabis.

Cannabis has several medicinal properties. AIDS patients use it to increase their appetite or to reduce side-effects of chemotherapy and chronic pain. Many studies show that it can regulate blood sugar and help in the treatment of multiple sclerosis and Parkinson’s disease.

The study also reveals that CBD controls seizures, prevents metastasis of aggressive cancers and destroys leukemia cells.

Neuropsychopharmacology published a study that stated CBD is as beneficial as an antipsychotic drug. CBD is able to treat schizophrenia and paranoia, without any side-effects.

Although illegal under U.S Federal law, 17 states permit the use of CBD for research and medical purposes. Laws of 23 other countries also allow the use of marijuana for medicinal functions.

The federal government still doesn’t recognize marijuana as an “accepted medical use”. However, the recent FDA approval of CBD extracts in an experimental treatment for the Dravet syndrome.

Diphtheria-Tetanus-Pertussis Vaccination and Dravet Syndrome

Even when the onset of Dravet syndrome immediately followed DTP vaccination, the course and outcome were the same as in patients with onset remote from vaccination.

Recent research has shown that most patients who experience the onset of a severe encephalopathy with seizures after pertussis vaccination have severe myoclonic epilepsy of infancy (Dravet syndrome), a condition that is causally linked to de novo mutations of the sodium-channel gene SCN1A. Although the pertussis vaccination could precipitate the clinical onset of the disease, it cannot be the cause in patients who have the mutation. These researchers aimed to determine whether diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis (DTP) vaccination affects the timing of onset, clinical features, or outcome of Dravet syndrome. They retrospectively studied 40 patients who had (1) Dravet syndrome, (2) a de novo SCN1A mutation, and (3) records documenting the dates of DTP vaccination and seizure onset (to avoid recall bias).

The researchers compared participants who had a first seizure on the day of DTP vaccination or the next day (the vaccination-proximate group) with those who had their first seizure at a different time (the vaccination-distant group). The only difference between the two groups was that the vaccination-proximate group had their first seizure about 2 months earlier (mean age, 18.4 vs. 26.2 weeks). The groups did not differ in terms of SCN1A mutation type, subsequent seizure type, or intellectual outcome (median age at follow-up, 5.4 years).

Comment: This study provides additional, robust evidence against the lingering belief or misperception that vaccinations can cause or aggravate neurological disorders. The findings support the counterargument that vaccinations, like intercurrent infectious illnesses, can lower the seizure threshold and precipitate the first seizure of an epilepsy that the patient was genetically programmed to develop. This study did not involve any comparison of patients with Dravet syndrome who had received DTP vaccination and those who had not.

— Blaise F. D. Bourgeois, MD

Dr. Bourgeois is Professor of Neurology, Harvard Medical School, and Director, Division of Epilepsy and Clinical Neurophysiology, Children’s Hospital, Boston.

Published in Journal Watch Neurology July 27, 2010