The E-petition may have failed but that doesn’t mean the game is over. Bud Buddies Jeff Ditchfield is ahead of the game and has the next stage of his cannabis oil experiment campaign already lined up. Here’s how you can play your part.
Well they can ignore the people all they like – including the cancer patients. Why? Because they can and they do and they have for centuries and that isn’t going to change. The UK quite simply is not the United States which some have the power of the people to change laws – unjust or not.
The laws in this country have not stopped millions of people choosing to consume cannabis regularly. It certainly isn’t making cannabis any less available. Despite the Home Office claiming Britain has medicinal cannabis in the form of Sativex, patients that need it on a severely desperate basis are not able to access it. Cancer patients that need the anti-nausea effects that cannabis provides so they can survive their chemo and radiotherepy, are denied it still.
“If a law is unjust, a man is not only right to disobey it; he is obligated to do so ”
~ Thomas Jefferson
Jeff Ditchfield has been campaigning for a change in UK cannabis laws for over 15 years and has never limited himself to fighting just one corner. Always ready to put his money where his mouth is (and believe us, Jeff knows a lot so he can talk about cannabis practically forever) he ran one of the UK’s most successful and longest running coffeeshops – The Beggar’s Belief. During his five years open he gained much media attention featuring in several mainstream TV documentaries.
With the headlines as they are covering the recent Government dismissal of the online cannabis petition that reached over 200,000 signatures we wanted to know what Jeff s opinion of the Governments response.
“I’m no great fan of petitions, I can’t think of a single petition that has changed Government policy, however the Government response in my opinion was dismissive and it is very clear that this Government are committed to their current policy.
So all consumers of cannabis will continue to be persecuted but for some the stakes are much, much higher.”
Author of two books on the subject on how to grow high quality indoor cannabis, Cannabis Cultivator and his latest with Mel Thomas The Medical Cannabis Guidebook which you can buy on Amazon here. Last year Jeff made a documentary following the lives of terminal cancer patients that had no other choice but to use cannabis oil as their treatment. More than being a film about cannabis oil it is a film about being a patient and what it is like to be thrust into these circumstances, left without care by a National Health Service to fight the ultimate killer. There are quite a few films on the benefits of cannabis oil but nothing that really overlaps the stories entwined through Project Storm.
It’s a weekly occurrence for a parent to get in touch with Jeff trying to find oil for their terminally diagnosed child.
“For attempting to save the life of a terminally ill child I have to enter into a ‘criminal’ conspiracy with the Mother & Father and we all face up to 14 years.
I understand that a civilised society needs laws, I am no Anarchist. We also require laws to specifically protect children which is why we have laws against child exploitation and child cruelty.
In the UK we should be very proud that we have laws to protect children but why under UK law is a paedophile only facing a maximum of 10 years in prison when myself and the parents of a terminally ill child are facing 14 years? Does anyone have an answer?”
This year Jeff decided to take a challenge on. He’s grabbing the bull by the horns and is teaming up with Dr Manuel Guzman at the University of Madrid in Spain to run an experiment to compare the impact of isolated THC and isolated CBD with whole plant cannabis extract on tumours in mice. Sounds pretty simple, so why hasn’t anyone done this before? Because it costs a lot. That’s why. But we can help Jeff change this and leave it to science to show us if what is being anecdotally claimed about cannabis oil by millions of people world wide that have used it successfully have any truth to them.
On Jeff’s GoFundMe page he says;
I am seeking to raise €35,000 to fund an independent experiment I am designing with Professors Guillermo Velasco, Cristina Sanchez and Manuel Guzman at the Complutense University of Madrid.
The research I hope to fund in Madrid will investigate the anti-cancer properties of cannabis and individual cannabinoids, seeking to establish the most effective cannabinoid or combination of cannabinoids. We will also investigate whether whole plant extracts or individual cannabinoids are more effective at treating breast cancer and glioma cell types than individual cannabinoids.
A pressing question for me is; which is more effective as an anti-cancer agent? whole plant extracts or individual pharmaceutical grade cannabinoids (both synthetic and plant derived)? This study will hopefully answer this question.
I cannot stress enough how important this particular research is; Guillermo recently oversaw an experiment into treating glioblastomas with cannabinoids which indicated that combining THC and CBD in equal amounts was more effective than either THC or CBD alone.
We caught up with Jeff at Product Earth to discuss his work following up the release of the Project Storm documentary and find out what teh process raising such a large amount of money for this overly needed cause has been like.
“It’s been running now for 2 months and we are currently €7,000 short of our €35,000 target. On the whole it has been a very uplifting experience for me, virtually all of the money raised so far has come from the public, and apart from seedsman.com none of the Companies in the cannabis industry have donated at all. That is very disappointing to me and I’ll be saying a lot more about this at a later date.”
We wondered how soon after the money is raised will the study be able to commence but as yet he’s unsure “I’m visiting Madrid in September so I hope the experiment will be able to commence very shortly after”.
Looking at the details of the experiment the team undertaking the clinical work is quite recognisable if you have read up on your published cannabis science, how did you manage to get them on board. This isn’t a usual route of funding a trial?
“It was mainly through all the filming we did during the making of Bud Buddies Project Storm, I’ve formed some good friendships there and they are a very impressive group of people.”
Jeff filled us in some more.
The vast majority of the research conducted at Madrid Complutense University has so far been funded by big Pharma. A study conducted by Professor Guillermo Velasco concluded that combining THC & CBD with a chemotherapy drug (Temozolomide) was more effective than either using THC, CBD or Temozolomide alone in treating gliomas.
This experiment was funded by GW Pharma so they now hold a Worldwide patent on the above.
There are currently in excess of 700 patents regarding cannabis and it dawned on me a while ago that the companies holding these patents are only funding research into areas where they can make a profit.
You can’t patent an oak tree so I therefore doubt anyone could patent a whole plant extract of cannabis, so companies like GW Pharma aren’t conducting research into whole plant extracts. What would be the point for them?
However, myself and big Pharma have a different sense of duty, the statutory duty of a Director of a company in the UK is towards their shareholders, mine is research.
So no company as far as I can see will fund research into something they cannot patent. I’m interested in what is the most effective as an anti-cancer agent, is it individual cannabinoids or combinations of single cannabinoids? or whole plant extracts?”
The only available option currently for patients in this horrible situation is to be prescribed dronabinol, or Marinol as it is know in the US. It’s essentially pure THC but it is synthesised in a lab rather than grown on a plant. Yes, that’s right, it’s pretty much “skunk” in a pill. It’s effective some of the way but not enough and that’s why cancer patients who have access to both natural cannabis and Marinol tend to stick to the cannabis. The price of pharmaceutical THC in a pill is less appealing too.
Studies have been carried out across the world to study the effects of cannabis oil’s components on the treatment of tumours and carcinomas. The results show that both THC and CBD are effective at treating certain types of cancers in some cases, halting, shrinking and even making tumours disappear. The cancers that these have most noticeably had papers published about their success with cannabis compounds are colon, prostate, breast and skin, but these are not yet shown in human clinical trials, just rats.
“The experiment I’m currently fundraising for will hopefully answer the above questions and we’ll also try and determine the mechanism of action of CBD. For £25,000 (35,000 euros) I think this is a bargain.” Jeff concluded to us.
We do too Jeff.
Professors Guillermo Velasco, Cristina Sanchez and Manuel Guzman have all published studies in this field and seem ideal candidates to carry out Jeff’s experiment. If this is something that you feel passionate about and you have anything you can contribute to speed up the process of the experiment coming to fruition it raises the hopes of millions around the world and could provide some crucial answers in explaining the effects of whole plant cannabis extracts from the natural plant.
Head over to Jeff GoFundMe page now and please help get the word spread across your social media pages.
Looking for a way for your business to contribute to the cannabis campaign? Here’s your chance!!!