Cannabinoids may prevent chemotherapy-induced diarrhea, which in some cases can be fatal, according to a new study published in the journal Transnational Psychiatry.
The study’s abstract begins by pointing out that; “The antineoplastic drug 5-fluoruracil (5-FU) is a pirimidine analog, which frequently induces potentially fatal diarrhea and mucositis. Cannabinoids reduce gastrointestinal motility and secretion and might prevent 5-FU-induced gut adverse effects. Here, we asked whether cannabinoids may prevent diarrhea and mucositis induced by 5-FU in the rat.”
Using rats and a cannabinoid receptor agonist meant to mimic the effects of cannabinoids, researchers found that it “tended to reduce the severity of 5-FU-induced diarrhea and increased permanence of barium from day 1 to the beginning of day 4 in 5-FU-treated animals. 5-FU-induced mucositis was severe and not counteracted by [the cannabinoid receptor agonist].”
Researchers conclude by stating that “5-FU-induced diarrhea, but not mucositis, was partly prevented by [the cannabinoid receptor agonist] at a low dose. Cannabinoids might be useful to prevent chemotherapy-induced diarrhea.”
The full study, conducted by researchers at the Sapienza University of Rome and the University “Roma Tre”, can be found by clicking here.