Adding to the list of numerous diseases that medical marijuana has already helped to heal – cancer, rare muscular diseases, arthritis, seizures, and more – compounds in the plant have also been shown to positively impact Alzheimer’s disease. This is important because the degenerative disease affects more than 5 million Americans.
One study, published in the journal Molecular Pharmacology in 2006, hits home for me personally because I lost my own mother to Alzheimer’s disease. All while there are millions of people who are diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and other degenerative neurological diseases every year throughout the world, and the number is expected to rise. It’s all so unnecessary.
The study found that a compound within cannabis harnesses two therapeutic properties ideal for addressing both the surface symptom (memory problems) and root cause (brain plaque) of Alzheimer’s disease.
It states very clearly that marijuana compounds which normally account for a ‘high,’ Delta 9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), competitively inhibits the enzyme acetyl cholinesterase (AChE) as well as prevents AChE-induced amyloid beta-peptide (Abeta) aggregation, the key pathological marker of Alzheimer’s disease. (Charts and graphs here.)
The study abstract states:
“Compared to currently approved drugs prescribed for the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease, THC is a considerably superior inhibitor of Abeta aggregation, and this study provides a previously unrecognized molecular mechanism through which cannabinoid molecules may directly impact the progression of this debilitating disease.“