Cannabis damages human DNA

  • Olivia Fens

Scientists have found evidence that cannabis smoking damages DNA and may increase the risk of cancer development.

Tobacco smoke contains 4000 chemicals of which 60 are classed as carcinogens (cancer causing).

Cannabis smoke contains 400 compounds, but because of its lower combustibility it contains 50% more carcinogenic chemicals than tobacco smoke, the researchers from the University of Leicester in the UK found.

They added that the ability of cannabis smoke to damage DNA had significant human health implications especially as users tend to inhale more deeply than cigarette smokers, which increases respiratory burden.

“The smoking of three to four cannabis cigarettes a day is associated with the same degree of damage to bronchial mucus membranes as 20 or more tobacco cigarettes a day,” the researchers said.

“These results provide evidence for the DNA damaging potential of cannabis smoke, and imply that the consumption of cannabis cigarettes may be detrimental to human health with the possibility to initiate cancer development.”

The study was published in the journal Chemical Research in Toxicology.

Comments

Vrtx - 18/06/2009 01:52

You have to love science, looking for all the bad in something and not for the good it does. If it's really that bad for you, then how come it's been smoked for over 10 thousand years?Everyone is so worried about the dangers of Marijuana and they don't question why cigarettes or alcohol is legal... the two absolute worst things out there and nobody seems to have a problem with that.. why?What DOESN"T cause cancer these days? If I want to go to Burger King and clog my arteries with a double-cheese, no big deal. If I want to smoke a cigerette, no big deal. If I want to spend a few years in any major Irish city I can walk away with lung damage. If I want to buy a bottle of beer and destroy my liver, no big deal.The article still doesn't get the point. If you can use medical marijuana to treat people instead of using drugs that are MORE HARMFUL than Marijuana then it doesn't matter what you find out about MJ, it is still a FAR-LESS harmful treatment. If I have a medical problem, and I can either treat it with morphine or medical Marijuana, which do you think is more dangerous? Sure Marijuana may cause cancer down the road in a very small percentage of users (even though there has NEVER been a study done on this that I know of), but it is a better option than spending the next few years of my life addicted to morphine or painkilers.

Take care.

Anonymous - 22/06/2009 17:35

Vrtx, in one way I agree with you - yes, cannabis causes damage, as does cigarettes, stress toi an enormous extent, poor diet and excess (the key is excesss) alcohol. However, one beer is not going to cause liver damage any more than on edouble-cheese is going to damage your DNA.

Yes, some pain medication can be addictive and morphone is never used long term except in terminal cases but cannabis can also be addictive.

weedluv - 04/10/2009 04:23

Cannabis damages human DNA

were did you get your info,,

your telling me that if 1 of your family members was dying in pain ,,

you would not try and help them ,, by letting them have a cannabis joint or vaporizer

which will instantly bring them away from there suffering

also why has half of american states got dispensories for cannabis,,

the most harmfull cemical imported by our governments is tobacco ,, over 750.000 people die each year

cannabis is proven that is has never had 1 death directly from cannabis use,,

Why dont you watch the video the union ,, you will find in google ,, then come on saying this rubbish,,,

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