Saturday, May 27, 2006

Science Saturday III: Medical Marijuana Update

When the U.S. Food and Drug Administration shat all over the well proven fact that medical marijuana is beneficial under certain circumstances in a shabbily resourced report last month, it claimed that pot smoking caused lung cancer.

Not that it matters to the feckless F.D.A., but now comes a study that debunks that notion.

Researchers at UCLA had expected to find that a history of heavy marijuana use, like cigarette smoking, would increase the risk of cancer.
Instead, the study, which compared the lifestyles of 611 Los Angeles County lung cancer patients and 601 patients with head and neck cancers with those of 1,040 people without cancer, found no elevated cancer risk for even the heaviest pot smokers, while it did find a 20-fold increased risk of lung cancer in people who smoked two or more packs of cigarettes a day.
Why no cancers?
Dr. Donald Tashkin, senior researcher and professor at the UCLA School of Medicine, theorized that tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, a chemical in marijuana smoke that produces its psychotropic effect, may encourage aging, damaged cells to die off before they become cancerous.
For my take on medical marijuana and a photo of my medical marijuana-smoking felonious father and aiding and abetting mother, check out this earlier Kiko's House post.

1 comment:

the highway scribe said...

You may hear from wife after having armed me with this post. En guarde!