Cancer cells being treated by medicinal cannabis


The role of medicinal cannabis in the treatment of cancer

There is an urgent need to discover more effective treatments of aggressive cancers that have a poor response to current therapies and, consequently, low patient survival rates. 

Our Research

Cannabinoids for cancer

This project examines the anticancer effects of cannabinoids in preclinical models of mesothelioma and pancreatic cancer. We are testing cannabinoids alone, in combination with full spectrum cannabis extracts, and the current standard of care anti-mesothelioma treatment (pemetrexed and cisplatin) for synergism and efficacy.

This is a collaboration between the Lambert Initiative for Cannabinoid Therapeutics at the University of Sydney; the Kolling Institute; and Royal North Shore Hospital.

Research Team: Dr Emily Colvin, Dr Amanda Hudson, Associate Professor Viive Howell (University of Sydney); Associate Professor Jonathon Arnold, Professor Iain McGregor (Lambert Initiative, University of Sydney)

CannabisCINV trial: Medicinal cannabis for Chemotherapy-Induced Nausea and Vomiting

The CannabisCINV trial is a randomised, controlled clinical study funded by NSW Department of Health investigating the potential of an oral, plant-derived, pharmaceutical-grade capsule containing equal amounts of THC and CBD for prevention of chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting. Participants are over 18, are undergoing intravenous chemotherapy and have significant symptoms during treatment despite being given the best standard of care.

Participants enrolled in the pilot trial will be randomly allocated (by chance) to receive the study drug for the first five days of their first chemotherapy cycle following enrolment, followed by a placebo capsule for the first five days of the next chemotherapy cycle, or to receive the placebo first followed by the study treatment. All participants will then choose which treatment they would prefer to take for the first five days of the third chemotherapy cycle. Participants will be asked to complete a number of questionnaires relating to their nausea and vomiting, quality of life and any side effects of the treatment. 

The CannabisCINV trial is a collaboration between the Chris O’Brien Lifehouse; the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) Clinical Trials Centre, University of Sydney; and the Lambert Initiative for Cannabinoid Therapeutics at the University of Sydney.

Chief Investigator: Associate Professor Peter Grimison (Chris O’Brien Lifehouse)

Project Manager: Ms Anna Walsh

For further information, please contact: