London-based CBD Science Group has announced a highly sought-after endorsement from the National Cancer Research Institute (NCRI) regarding the company’s Real World Evidence (RWE) study into the role cannabinoids can play in treating cancer-related pain.
The development could give hope to cancer patients around the world, as the treatment and management of cancer pain continue to be a major burden on patients and their families.
“We are pleased to have secured this endorsement from the NCRI which offers hope to millions of people with long-term cancer pain around the world. We strongly believe in the opportunity that our RWE study presents, and look forward to working closely and deepening our relationship with the NCRI,” Graeme McFarlane, chief commercial officer of CBD Science Group, told Benzinga. “This partnership will enhance our objective of realizing the advantages of cannabinoids in fulfilling this urgent need of suffering patients.”
The company has appointed a distinguished Clinical Advisory Board under the direction of the group’s chief clinical advisor and former deputy medical director of the National Health Service (NHS) England, Professor Mike Bewick, along with other leading experts in the area, including Professor Sam Ahmedzai, co-chair of NCRI Living With and Beyond Cancer Research Group.
"There is a large and rapidly growing population of people surviving for many years with cancer, and chronic pain related to the cancer itself or indeed arising from the anti-cancer treatments, is an insurmountable barrier to living a productive and rewarding life with family and friends - at all stages of cancer," Ahmedzai told Benzinga. "It's well documented how current pain treatment options are largely ineffective or cause even more harmful side effects, underlining the need for new research in order to find better therapies. I am delighted to actively participate in CBD Science Group’s goal of finding an effective and safer medicinal cannabis solution to relieve the suffering of patients living with cancer-related pain.”
National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) guidelines on medical cannabis found that previous evidence for chronic pain associated with cancer patients was lacking, rendering research into the use of cannabinoids as an alternative pain medicine extremely timely. Also given the lack of evidence proving its effectiveness and significant evidence showing the long-term harm caused by opioids, NICE has recommended against opioid use for people with chronic primary pain and is actively encouraging research into alternative solutions.
In addition to this, the continued fallout from COVID -19 is concerning oncologists and clinicians across the UK. It has been reported that the U.K. is experiencing an emerging cancer crisis after new figures recently showed more than 300,000 people had missed checkups for the disease since the start of the pandemic. The fear that more patients than ever are going untreated for their cancer and opioid prescriptions will continue to skyrocket as suitable alternatives are still unavailable through the NHS.
In the UK there are an estimated 3 million patients suffering from cancer with 367,000 new diagnoses per year. Of that population, it has been shown that pain prevalence affects 39.3% after curative treatment; 55.0% during anti-cancer treatment; and 66.4% in advanced, metastatic, or terminal disease. With Millions of patients going untreated for cancer-related pain, It is clear that proving cannabis-based medicines as an alternative for successful pain treatments is needed as a matter of urgency.
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