A global leader in medicinal cannabis research has warned that cannabis remains a “lottery” for cancer sufferers and advised patients to continue seeking regular treatments that have higher chances of success.
Dr Dedi Meiri, assistant professor at the Faculty of Biology at the Technion Israel Institute of Technology, said he “needs more time” to explore the potential benefit of cannabis for those fighting cancer.
Until researchers unearth better results, patients should stick with tried and tested remedies, Dr Meiri said.
But speaking on a webinar hosted by Technion Australia, he stressed it remains clear that cannabis will have a major influence on medicine over the next few years.
Asked how he responds when patients ask what strain of cannabis they should use for their condition, Dr Meiri said: “I don’t usually answer. If we take cancer, there are hundreds of types of cancer. There are more than 40 types of breast cancer and every cell in our body can have its own type of cancer.
“And just in my lab I have 900 varieties of cannabis, each one with different combinations. So it’s a lottery to define which cannabis can affect your cancer.
“I need more time [for research]. For now, I would usually tell a patient to go with the regular treatment because the rate of success is much, much, much higher than cannabis. Cannabis is still a lottery with these types of diseases.”
But cannabis has shown its worth in numerous other conditions, he stressed.