Therapeutic Potential of Cannabinoids on Tumor Microenvironment: A Molecular Switch in Neoplasia Transformation

Hamid A. Bakshi, Hakkim L. Faruck, Zeinab Ravesh, Prawej Ansari, J. M.A. Hannan, Rina Hashimoto, Kazuo Takayama, Rabia Farzand, Mohamed M. Nasef, Adelaide Mensah, Alaa A.A. Aljabali, Vijay Mishra, Nitin B. Charbe, Rohit Goyal, Poonam Negi, Ángel Serrano-Aroca, Bojlul Bahar, Mohamed El-Tanani, Aaron J. Courtenay, Paul McCarronIain G. Jack, Murtaza M. Tambuwala

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


The efficacy of chemotherapy depends on the tumor microenvironment. This microenvironment consists of a complex cellular network that can exert both stimulatory and inhibitory effects on tumor genesis. Given the increasing interest in the effectiveness of cannabis, cannabinoids have gained much attention as a potential chemotherapy drug. Cannabinoids are a group of marker compounds found in Cannabis sativa L., more commonly known as marijuana, a psychoactive drug used since ancient times for pain management. Although the anticancer potential of C. sativa, has been recognized previously, increased attention was generated after discovering the endocannabinoid system and the successful production of cannabinoid receptors. In vitro and in vivo studies on various tumor models have shown therapeutic efficiency by modifying the tumor microenvironment. However, despite extensive attention regarding potential therapeutic implications of cannabinoids, considerable clinical and preclinical analysis is needed to adequately define the physiological, pharmacological, and medicinal aspects of this range of compounds in various disorders covered in this review. This review summarizes the key literature surrounding the role of cannabinoids in the tumor microenvironment and their future promise in cancer treatment.

Bibliographical note

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© The Author(s) 2022.


  • angiogenic factor
  • cannabinoids
  • combination therapy
  • hypoxia
  • signaling pathways
  • tumor genesis

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article
  • Review


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