World first trial of cannabis-based drug to treat aggressive brain cancer gets ...

World first trial of cannabis-based drug to treat aggressive brain cancer gets ...
World first trial of cannabis-based drug to treat aggressive brain cancer gets ...

Hundreds of cancer patients in the UK will be given a cannabis-based drug to treat their aggressive brain tumours as part of a world first trial, it was announced today.

The Brain Tumour Charity raised £400,000 to back the three-year study, which will supplement glioblastoma patients' chemotherapy treatment with Sativex — an oral spray containing cannabinoids.

Experts at the University of Leeds will look at whether the addition of the drug extends life for people diagnosed with the cancer. 

The trial will begin recruiting 230 patients at 15 hospitals across the UK early next year. 

If the drug works, it could become the first addition to NHS treatment for glioblastoma in more than a decade.  

Professor Susan Short, chief trial investigator and an expert in clinical oncology and neuro-oncology at Leeds University, said cannabinoids have 'well-described effects' in the brain and the trial will determine whether they help treat the most common and aggressive form of brain cancer. 

Around 2,200 people are diagnosed with glioblastoma every year in England. Even after intensive treatment, almost all glioblastomas recur and the average survival is just 12 to 18 months after diagnosis.

The trial ¿ dubbed ARISTOCRAT ¿ will determine whether adding Sativex to chemotherapy extends the patients' lives, slows the progression of their disease or improves their quality of life. Sativex is sprayed into the mouth and contains cannabinoids THC and CBD. Pictured: medicinal cannabis

The trial — dubbed ARISTOCRAT — will determine whether adding Sativex to chemotherapy extends the patients' lives, slows the progression of their disease or improves their quality of life. Sativex is sprayed into the mouth and contains cannabinoids THC and CBD. Pictured: medicinal cannabis

WHICH HOSPITALS WILL OFFER THE TREATMENT? 

A trial offering 230 glioblastoma patients cannabis-based drug Sativex  to treat their tumour is set to launch early next year.

The trial will recruit patients at 15 hospitals across the UK early next year. 

These 15 sites are:

Leeds General Infirmary Guy’s and St Thomas’ in London Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham Addenbrooke's Hospital in Cambridge Western General Hospital in Edinburgh The Beatson in Glasgow The Clatterbridge Cancer Centre in Liverpool The Christie in Manchester Queen's Medical Centre in Nottingham John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford Southampton General Hospital Southmead Hospital in Bristol Charing Cross Hospital in London Velindre Cancer Centre inCardiff The Royal Victoria Hospital in Belfast

Advertisement

The trial — dubbed ARISTOCRAT — will determine whether adding Sativex to chemotherapy extends the patients' lives, slows the progression of their disease or improves their quality of life.

It will be the first major trial in the world to use the drug to treat glioblastoma.

Sativex, made by Cambridge-based GW Pharma, is sprayed into the mouth and contains cannabinoids THC and CBD.

Laboratory studies have suggested that these cannabinoids may reduce brain tumour cell growth and could disrupt the blood supply to tumours. But clinical evidence of their effect has so far been limited. 

A phase one trial earlier this year found more patients were alive after one year compared to the group who received a placebo treatment. 

But the study — which involved 27 patients — was too small to confirm the treatment increased survival rates. 

The most common side-effects reported during the phase one study were fatigue, headache, vomiting and

read more from dailymail.....

NEXT NHS waiting list could DOUBLE to 12 million in just four years, damning report ...