Anticonvulsant activity of delta9-tetrahydrocannabinol compared with three other drugs.


“Delta9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) was compared with diphenylhydantoin (DPH), phenobarbital (PB) and chlordiazepoxide (CDP) using several standard laboratory procedures to determine anticonvulsant activity in mice, i.e., the maximal electroshock test (MES), and seizures induced by pentylenetetrazol, strychnine and nicotine. In the MES test, THC was the least potent and DPH the most potent blocker of hind limb tonic extensor convulsions whereas THC was the most potent and DPH the least potent in increasing the latency to this response and in preventing mortality. Seizures and mortality induced by pentylenetetrazol or by strychnine were enhanced by THC and DPH and were blocked by PB and CDP. In the test with nicotine, none of the four anticonvulsant agents prevented seizures; DPH was the only one which failed to increase latency; THC and DPH were less potent than PB and CDP in preventing mortality. THC most closely resembled DPH in the tests with chemical convulsant agents, but a sedative action of THC, resembling that of PB and CDP, was indicated by low ED5 0 for increased latency and for prevention of mortality in the MES test.”

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