“Several works have reported on the antiepileptic impact of cannabis-based preparations in patients with treatment-resistant epilepsy (TRE). However, current formulations suffer from low bioavailability and side effects. PTL-101, an oral formulation containing highly purified cannabidiol (CBD) embedded in seamless gelatin matrix beadlets was designed to enhance bioavailability and maintain a constant gastrointestinal transit time.
Sixteen patients (age: 9.1±3.4) enrolled in the study; 11 completed the full treatment program. The average maintenance dose was 13.6±4.2mg/kg. Patient adherence to treatment regimens was 96.3±9.9%. By the end of the treatment period, 81.9% and 73.4±24.6% (p<0.05) reductions from baseline median seizure count and monthly seizure frequency, respectively, were recorded. Responders’ rate was 56%; two patients became fully seizure-free. By study end, 8 (73%) caregivers reported an improved/very much improved condition, and 9 (82%) reported reduced/very much reduced seizure severity. Most commonly reported treatment-related adverse effects were sleep disturbance/insomnia, (4 (25.0%) patients), followed by somnolence, increased seizure frequency, and restlessness (3 patients each (18.8%)). None were serious or severe, and all resolved.
PTL-101 was safe and tolerable for use and demonstrated a potent seizure-reducing effect among pediatric patients with TRE.”
“Cannabidiol is a cannabis-derived medicinal product with potential application in a wide-variety of contexts, however its effective dose in different disease states remains unclear. This review aimed to investigate what doses have been applied in clinical populations, in order to understand the active range of cannabidiol in a variety of medical contexts.
A total of 1038 articles were retrieved, of which 35 studies met inclusion criteria covering 13 medical contexts. 23 studies reported a significant improvement in primary outcomes (e.g. psychotic symptoms, anxiety, seizures), with doses ranging between <1 – 50 mg/Kg/day. Plasma concentrations were not provided in any publication. Cannabidiol was reported as well tolerated and epilepsy was the most frequently studied medical condition, with all 11 studies demonstrating positive effects of cannabidiol on reducing seizure frequency or severity (average 15 mg/Kg/day within randomised controlled trials). There was no signal of positive activity of CBD in small randomised controlled trials (range n=6-62) assessing diabetes, Crohn’s disease, ocular hypertension, fatty liver disease or chronic pain. However, low doses (average 2.4 mg/Kg/day) were used in these studies.
This review highlights cannabidiol has a potential wide range of activity in several pathologies. Pharmacokinetic studies as well as conclusive phase III trials to elucidate effective plasma concentrations within medical contexts are severely lacking and highly encouraged.”
“Cognitive dysfunction is a common comorbidity in adults with treatment-resistant epilepsy (TRE).
Recently, cannabidiol (CBD) has demonstrated efficacy in epilepsy treatment. However, our understanding of CBD’s cognitive effects in epilepsy is limited.
We examined long-term cognitive effects of CBD in adults with TRE as part of an ongoing prospective, open-label safety study.
Longitudinal analysis revealed no significant group change across the two global composite scales. Of the seven individual cognitive tests, none changed significantly over time. No correlation was found between the cognitive change scores and CBD dose (all P’s ≥; 0.2). Change in cognitive test performance was not associated change in seizure severity rating.
These findings are encouraging and indicate that long-term administration of pharmaceutical grade CBD is overall cognitively well-tolerated in adults with TRE.”
“Dravet syndrome is an infantile epileptic encephalopathy primarily caused by loss-of-function variants of the gene SCN1A Standard treatment regimens have very limited efficacy to combat the life-threatening seizures in Dravet syndrome or the behavioral-cognitive comorbidities of the disease. Recently there has been encouraging progress in developing new treatments for this disorder.
One of the clinical advances is cannabidiol (CBD), a compound naturally found in cannabis and shown to further reduce convulsive seizures in patients when used together with existing drug regimens. Like many other natural products, the exact therapeutic mechanism of CBD remains undefined.
Previously we have established a human cellular model of Dravet syndrome by differentiating patient-derived induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) into telencephalic inhibitory and excitatory neurons. Here we have applied this model to investigate the antiepileptic mechanism(s) of CBD at the cellular level.
We first determined the effect of escalating the concentrations of CBD on neuronal excitability, using primary culture of rat cortical neurons. We found modulatory effects on excitability at submicromolar concentrations and toxic effects at high concentrations (15 µM). We then tested CBD at 50 nM, a concentration that corresponds to the estimated human clinical exposure, in telencephalic neurons derived from a patient iPSC line and control cell line H9. This 50 nM of CBD increased the excitability of inhibitory neurons but decreased the excitability of excitatory neurons, without changing the amplitude of sodium currents in either cell type.
Our findings suggest a cell type-dependent mechanism for the therapeutic action of CBD in Dravet syndrome that is independent of sodium channel activity.”
“Interest in cannabis and its related cannabinoids THC and CBD for use as anti-convulsant therapy has been progressively increasing. While the destigmatization of cannabis and cannabis related research have progressed in the last few decades, there are still many questions that remain answered. This review seeks to summarize the progress made in cannabis research in the past four decades and to identify possible directions for future research that are critical for the development of cannabinoid-based therapy in epilepsy.”