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Cannabis may harm chance of successful treatment for cancer patients – study

Cannabis consumption by advanced cancer patients lightens symptoms and side effects, but may impair the success of immunotherapy.

By Sarah Chemla | JPost
September 8, 2020

Photo Credit:  INGIMAGE

Cannabis, widely used by cancer patients to help deal with the symptoms and side effects of various treatments, may impair the chances of success of immunotherapy, a new study shows.

Immunotherapy, considered to be the most significant breakthrough in the field of cancer treatment in the last decade, is a method of treatment which uses the patient’s immune system to detect and attack cancer cells more effectively.

The study, supported by the Israel Cancer Association (ICA), was led by Israeli researchers Dr. Idan Cohen and Prof. Gil Bar Sela from the Oncology Department at HaEmek Medical Center in Afula, and the Rappaport Faculty of Medicine at the Technion, together with Prof. Dedi Meiri from the Technion’s Faculty of Biology.

The study, supported by the Israel Cancer Association (ICA), was led by Israeli researchers Dr. Idan Cohen and Prof. Gil Bar Sela from the Oncology Department at HaEmek Medical Center in Afula, and the Rappaport Faculty of Medicine at the Technion, together with Prof. Dedi Meiri from the Technion’s Faculty of Biology.

The study pointed out that while cannabis consumption reduced treatment-related side effects, a correlation was also found between cannabis use and the shortening of time until the disease worsened, along with a dramatic decrease in overall patient survival rates.

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