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An explainer of a new marijuana-based pharmaceutical drug approved by FDA

An explainer of a new marijuana-based pharmaceutical drug approved by FDA

Health
Epidiolex, a medication formulated from a cannabidiol (CBD) substance derived from the marijuana plant was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for children and adults over the age of 2. It treats Dravet syndrome and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome (LGS), two rare epilepsy disorders that primarily affect children. What is Epidiolex? Epidiolex is an oral liquid-based drug made from the cannabidiol (CBD) portion of cannabis. Compared to the tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) portion, CBD is not psychoactive, so taking this drug would not result in a high for the user. CBD acts on different parts of the nervous system compared with THC. According to the Centers for Disease and Control (CDC), THC and CBD both may be useful for nausea caused by cancer treatments. Neither marijuana-derive...
Prostate cancer immune system drug results could be 'spectacular'

Prostate cancer immune system drug results could be 'spectacular'

Health
Drugs that boost the immune system have saved the lives of some men with terminal prostate cancer, say doctors in the UK.The team at the Institute of Cancer Research and the Royal Marsden Hospital in London said the results were "spectacular" and a "big deal".However, the therapy will not work for most patients. Cancer Research UK said the next step was to predict who would respond.Immunotherapy is transforming the treatment of cancer and is now part of routine practice for some skin and lung cancers. It works by taking the brakes off a patients' own immune system so it can attack a tumour. An early stage trial, presented at the world's biggest meeting of cancer doctors and scientists in Chicago, is the first to show that this approach works on prostate c...
Antifungal drug eliminates dormant bowel cancer cells in mice

Antifungal drug eliminates dormant bowel cancer cells in mice

Health
June 1 (UPI) -- An antifungal medication commonly prescribed to treat toenail infections helped eliminate dormant cells within bowel tumors in mice. Researchers at the Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute found that itraconazole effectively halts the growth and progression of certain types of colorectal cancer. Their findings were published Thursday in the Journal of Experimental Medicine. "This innovative study has taken a step toward addressing one of the biggest challenges in cancer research," Dr. Greg Hannon, director of the institute, said in a press release. "Tumors are made up of many different types of cancer cells, which can evolve separately and respond to treatments differently." Colorectal cancer of the colon and rectum is the second leading cancer killer in the United Stat...
New drug may treat difficult lung, pancreatic cancer tumors

New drug may treat difficult lung, pancreatic cancer tumors

Health
May 29 (UPI) -- A new class of drugs, known as SHP2 inhibitors, may be effective against a wider range of cancers than previously thought, including treating pancreatic and lung cancer tumors, the Technical University of Munich said Tuesday. The drugs, which are typically not used on patients with hard-to-treat tumors, are currently being tested on patients with aggressive cancers, TUM said in a statement. Both pancreatic and lung cancers are collectively classified as KRAS tumors, due to their shared genetic error. The genetic error means that cell proteins, which are involved in cell division, no longer work properly and are always active -- leading to overactive cell division and tumor formation. Because KRAS proteins also play a crucial role for healthy cells, deactivating the protei...
Study: Calls to poison centers in child ADHD drug cases up 64 percent

Study: Calls to poison centers in child ADHD drug cases up 64 percent

Health
May 21 (UPI) -- Child exposure to ADHD drugs is increasing in the United States -- marked by a jump of more than 60 percent over a 14-year period, a new study showed Monday. The study in the journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics looked at calls to U.S. poison control centers to see if ADHD exposures were on the rise. The answer was yes. The study found more than 156,000 calls for unintentional and intentional exposures of the drugs to U.S. children and adolescents between 2000 and 2014 -- an increase of 64 percent. The report said exposures increased 71 percent from 2000 to 2011, and decreased 6 percent from 2011 to 2014. More than three quarters involved children under 12. "[ADHD] is the most commonly diagnosed neurobehaviorial disorder in children," said Dr. Gary Smith of the N...