CBD: A New Hope?

 ACS Medicinal Chemistry Letters“The nonpsychoactive phytocannabinoid, CBD, was recently approved by the Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of children with drug-resistant epilepsy. This milestone opens new avenues for cannabinoid research. In this Viewpoint, we provide an overview of recent progress in the field highlighting molecular insights into CBD’s mechanism of action, as well as its therapeutic potential.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31097982

https://pubs.acs.org/doi/10.1021/acsmedchemlett.9b00127

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Cannabinoid interactions with ion channels and receptors.

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“Cannabidiol (CBD), the non-psychoactive component of Cannabis sativa, acts on a diverse selection of membrane proteins with promising therapeutic potential in epilepsy and chronic pain. In this review, we will outline the studies that report reproducible results of CBD and other cannabinoids changing membrane channel function, with particular interest on Nav. Nav are implicated in fatal forms of epilepsy and are also associated with chronic pain. This makes Nav potential targets for CBD interaction since it has been reported to reduce pain and seizures. This discovery will not only prompt further research towards CBD’s characterization, but also promotes the application of cannabinoids as potentially therapeutic compounds for diseases like epilepsy and pain.” https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31088312
https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/19336950.2019.1615824

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Cannabidiol Enhances the Therapeutic Effects of TRAIL by Upregulating DR5 in Colorectal Cancer.

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“Cannabidiol, a major non-psychotomimetic compound derived from Cannabis sativa, is a potential therapeutic agent for a variety of diseases such as inflammatory diseases, chronic neurodegenerative diseases, and cancers.

Here, we found that the combination of cannabidiol and TNF-related apoptosis-inducing ligand (TRAIL) produces synergistic antitumor effects in vitro. However, this synergistic effect was not observed in normal colonic cells. The levels of ER stress-related proteins, including C/EBP homologous protein (CHOP) and phosphorylated protein kinase RNA-like ER kinase (PERK) were increased in treatment of cannabidiol.

Cannabidiol enhanced significantly DR5 expression by ER stress. Knockdown of DR5 decreased the combined effect of cannabidioland TRAIL. Additionally, the combination of TRAIL and cannabidiol decreased tumor growth in xenograft models.

Our studies demonstrate that cannabidiol enhances TRAIL-induced apoptosis by upregulating DR5 and suggests that cannabidiol is a novel agent for increasing sensitivity to TRAIL.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31075907

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Gender differences in the effects of cannabidiol on ethanol binge drinking in mice.

Addiction Biology banner“The purpose of this study was to explore the effects of cannabidiol (CBD) on binge drinking and evaluate potential gender-related differences.

Chronic CBD administration (30, 60 and 90 mg/kg) reduced ethanol intake in males, whereas in females a significant reduction was only achieved with the highest dose (90 mg/kg). Repeated administration with CBD (60 mg/kg) significantly reduced TH and OPRM1 in males. In addition, CBD (30 and 60 mg/kg) significantly reduced CB1 r in males. No effect was observed in females.

Taken together, these findings suggest that CBD may be of interest for treating binge-drinking patterns and that gender-related difference may affect the treatment outcome.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31074060

https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/adb.12765

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Cannabidiol (CBD) reduces anxiety-related behavior in mice via an FMRP1-independent mechanism.

Pharmacology Biochemistry and Behavior

“Fragile X Syndrome is a neurodevelopmental disorder which affects intellectual, social and physical development due to mutation of the Fragile X mental retardation 1 (FMR1) gene. The resultant loss of Fragile X mental retardation protein can be modelled by Fmr1 gene knockout (KO) in mice.

The current study investigated the behavioural effects of cannabidiol (CBD; a non-psychoactive phytocannabinoid) in male Fmr1 KO mice as a preclinical model for therapeutic discovery.

Overall, acute CBD at the doses chosen did not selectively normalize behavioural abnormalities in Fmr1 KO mice, but reduced anxiety-like behaviour in both Fmr1 KO and WT mice.” https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31063743

“Acute cannabidiol (CBD) decreased anxiety-related behaviours in both Fmr1 knockout mice and wildtype controls in the elevated plus maze. Fmr1 KO mice were hyperlocomotive, showed fewer anxiety-related behaviours and habituated more slowly to a novel environment than controls. Acute CBD had no impact on locomotion, spatial working memory or fear-associated memory in Fmr1 knockout mice or controls.”   https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0091305718306464?via%3Dihub

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Randomized blinded controlled clinical trial to assess the effect of oral cannabidiol administration in addition to conventional antiepileptic treatment on seizure frequency in dogs with intractable idiopathic epilepsy.

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“Dogs in the CBD group had a significant reduction in seizure frequency, compared with the placebo group”
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Cannabidiol attenuates aggressive behavior induced by social isolation in mice: Involvement of 5-HT1A and CB1 receptors.

Progress in Neuro-Psychopharmacology and Biological Psychiatry

“Long-term single housing increases aggressive behavior in mice, a condition named isolation-induced aggression or territorial aggression, which can be attenuated by anxiolytic, antidepressant, and antipsychotic drugs.

Preclinical and clinical findings indicate that cannabidiol (CBD), a non-psychotomimetic compound from Cannabis sativa, has anxiolytic, antidepressant, and antipsychotic properties. Few studies, however, have investigated the effects of CBD on aggressive behaviors.

Here, we investigated whether CBD (5, 15, 30, and 60 mg/kg; i.p.) could attenuate social isolation-induced aggressive behavior in the resident-intruder test.

Taken together, our findings suggest that CBD may be therapeutically useful to treat aggressive behaviors that are usually associated with psychiatric disorders.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31054943

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0278584618308340?via%3Dihub

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Palmitoylethanolamide and Cannabidiol Prevent Inflammation-induced Hyperpermeability of the Human Gut In Vitro and In Vivo-A Randomized, Placebo-controlled, Double-blind Controlled Trial.

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“We aimed to examine, for the first time, the effect of cannabidiol (CBD) and palmitoylethanolamide (PEA) on the permeability of the human gastrointestinal tract in vitro, ex vivo, and in vivo.

RESULTS:

In vitro, PEA, and CBD decreased the inflammation-induced flux of dextrans (P < 0.0001), sensitive to PPARα and CB1 antagonism, respectively. Both PEA and CBD were prevented by PKA, MEK/ERK, and adenylyl cyclase inhibition (P < 0.001). In human mucosa, inflammation decreased claudin-5 mRNA, which was prevented by CBD (P < 0.05). Palmitoylethanolamide and cannabidiol prevented an inflammation-induced fall in TRPV1 and increase in PPARα transcription (P < 0.0001). In vivo, aspirin caused an increase in the absorption of lactulose and mannitol, which were reduced by PEA or CBD (P < 0.001).

CONCLUSION:

Cannabidiol and palmitoylethanolamide reduce permeability in the human colon. These findings have implications in disorders associated with increased gut permeability, such as inflammatory bowel disease.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31054246

https://academic.oup.com/ibdjournal/article-abstract/25/6/1006/5341970?redirectedFrom=fulltext

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Cannabidiol: A Review of Clinical Efficacy and Safety in Epilepsy.

Pediatric Neurology

“Several new antiepileptic medicines became available for clinical use in the last two decades. However, the prognosis of epilepsy remains unchanged, with approximately one-third of patients continuing to have drug-resistant seizures. Because many of these patients are not candidates for curative epilepsy surgery, there is a need for new seizure medicines with better efficacy and safety profile.

Recently, social media and public pressure sparked a renewed interest in cannabinoids, which had been used for epilepsy since ancient times. However, physicians have significant difficulty prescribing cannabinoids freely because of the paucity of sound scientific studies.

Among the two most common cannabinoids, cannabidiol has better antiepileptic potential than tetrahydrocannabinol. The exact antiepileptic mechanism of cannabidiol is currently not known, but it modulates a number of endogenous systems and may have a novel anticonvulsant effect. However, it has broad drug-drug interactions with several agents, including inducer and inhibitor of CYP3A4 or CYP2C19. Cannabidiol can cause liver enzyme elevation, especially when co-administered with valproate.

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved pharmaceutical-grade cannabidiol oil for two childhood-onset catastrophic epilepsies: Dravet syndrome and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome.

The Drug Enforcement Agency also reclassified this product as a schedule V agent. However, other cannabidiol products remain as a schedule I substance and are primarily used without regulation. Additionally, the FDA-approved pharmaceutical-grade cannabidiol oil is expensive, and insurance companies might approve this only for the designated indications.

In despair, many individuals may resort to unregulated medical cannabis products in an attempt to control seizures. Rather than spontaneous treatment without medical supervision, adequate medical oversight is indicated to monitor and manage the proper dose, side effects, validity of the product, and drug-drug interactions.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31053391

https://www.pedneur.com/article/S0887-8994(18)31168-8/fulltext

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Pharmacokinetics and Tolerability of Multiple Doses of Pharmaceutical-Grade Synthetic Cannabidiol in Pediatric Patients with Treatment-Resistant Epilepsy.

“Prior studies have evaluated the use of various constituents of cannabis for their anti-seizure effects. Specifically, cannabidiol, a non-psychoactive component of cannabis, has been investigated for treatment-resistant epilepsy, but more information is needed particularly on its use in a pediatric population.

OBJECTIVE:

The objective of this study was to evaluate the pharmacokinetics and safety of a synthetic pharmaceutical-grade cannabidiol oral solution in pediatric patients with treatment-resistant epilepsy.

RESULTS:

Overall, 61 patients across three cohorts received one of three doses of cannabidiol oral solution (mean age, 7.6 years). The age composition was similar in the three cohorts. There was a trend for increased cannabidiol exposure with increased cannabidiol oral solution dosing, but overall exposure varied. Approximately 2-6 days of twice-daily dosing provided steady-state concentrations of cannabidiol. A bi-directional drug interaction occurred with cannabidiol and clobazam. Concomitant administration of clobazam with 40 mg/kg/day of cannabidiol oral solution resulted in a 2.5-fold increase in mean cannabidiol exposure. Mean plasma clobazam concentrations were 1.7- and 2.2-fold greater in patients receiving clobazam concomitantly with 40 mg/kg/day of cannabidiol oral solution compared with 10 mg/kg/day and 20 mg/kg/day. Mean plasma norclobazam values were 1.3- and 1.9-fold higher for patients taking clobazam plus 40 mg/kg/day of cannabidiol oral solution compared with the 10-mg/kg/day and 20-mg/kg/day groups. All doses were generally well tolerated, and common adverse events that occurred at > 10% were somnolence (21.3%), anemia (18.0%), and diarrhea (16.4%).

CONCLUSIONS:

Inter-individual variability in systemic cannabidiol exposure after pediatric patient treatment with cannabidiol oral solution was observed but decreased with multiple doses. Short-term administration was generally safe and well tolerated.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31049885

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs40263-019-00624-4

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