Scientists Reveal How Cannabidiol (CBD) Can Fight Youth Psychosis
600 milligrams of CBD have been able to reduce the activity of brain regions related to psychosis, according to a new study by King's College of London.
A dose of 600mg of CBD reduces psychosis in adolescents
A new study from King College of London reveals that Cannabidiol (CBD) is able to reduce brain dysfunction in young people with psychosis.
The results of the study were published in the journal JAMA Psychiatry, they provide the first evidence of how cannabidiol works to reduce psychotic symptoms, especially in adolescents.
Cannabidiol is a non-psychoactive molecule that is found in cannabis and has unique properties for health.
The pure form (at 99,9%) of CBD recently received a US operating license under the name of the drug Epidiolex® (produced by the pharmaceutical company GW). It is used in the treatment of severe epilepsy such as Dravet syndrome and Lenox Gasteau.
A precedent in research
Professor Meshoulam has previously defined that CBD is an ideal remedy for schizophreniabut so far it is not clear how the molecule affects the brain to relieve psychosis.
"The current treatment of people with psychosis is based on drugs of the 50 years that, unfortunately, do not work for everyone," said Dr. Seznik in Hacharya, Institute for Psychiatry, Psychology and Brain Sciences ( IoPPN). Our results have begun to reveal "brain mechanisms" thanks to a new treatment that works very differently from other antipsychotics. "
The study of King's College London
The researchers examined a group of 33 young people who exhibited psychotic symptoms, with 19 healthy controls. A single dose of cannabidiol (CBD) to 600 mg was administered on 16 persons, and 17 received a placebo effect.
All participants were examined with an MRI scanner during a memory exercise that triggers the three areas of the brain known to be involved in psychosis.
And as expected, brain activity in at-risk participants was abnormal compared to healthy participants. However, the brain activity of those who received this dose of CBD was lower than those who received the placebo. This suggests that CBD helps regulate brain activity to a stable and normal level.
"One of the reasons the CBD is exciting is that it is very well tolerated compared to other antipsychotics we have at our disposal," said Bhattacharyya of King's College.
Most current antipsychotics target the chemical signaling system for dopamine in the brain, while CBD works in a different way.
Significantly, the compound is very well tolerated, avoiding unwanted side effects such as weight gain and other metabolic issues associated with existing medications.
"There is an urgent need for safe treatment for young people with psychosis."
The Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience at King's College is now planning a large clinical trial of 300 patients to test the true potential of CBD. Recruitment for the test should begin at the beginning of 2019.
The latest findings highlight the complexity of the cocktail of chemicals (cannabinoids) found in the cannabis plant; and at a time when cannabis laws are increasingly liberalized in many countries.