Delta-9-Tetrahydrocannabinol (∆9-THC) Induce Neurogenesis and Improve Cognitive Performances of Male Sprague Dawley Rats.

Neurotoxicity Research

“Neurogenesis is influenced by various external factors such as enriched environments. Some researchers had postulated that neurogenesis has contributed to the hippocampal learning and memory. This project was designed to observe the effect of Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (∆9-THC) in cognitive performance that influenced by the neurogenesis.

Different doses of ∆9-THC were used for observing the neurogenesis mechanism occurs in the hippocampus of rats. The brains were stained with antibodies, namely BrdU, glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP), nestin, doublecortin (DCX) and class III β-tubulin (TuJ-1). The cognitive test was used novel-object discrimination test (NOD) while the proteins involved, DCX and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), were measured.

Throughout this study, ∆9-THC enhanced the markers involved in all stages of neurogenesis mechanism. Simultaneously, the cognitive behaviour of rat also showed improvement in learning and memory functions observed in behavioural test and molecular perspective.

Administration of ∆9-THC was observed to enhance the neurogenesis in the brain, especially in hippocampus thus improved the cognitive function of rats.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28933048

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Medical marijuana for the treatment of vismodegib-related muscle spasm

JAAD Case Reports

“Basal cell carcinoma (BCC) arises from loss-of-function mutations in tumor suppressor patched homologue 1, which normally inhibits smoothened homologue in the sonic hedgehog signaling pathway. Vismodegib, a smoothened homologue inhibitor, is US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved for metastatic or locally advanced BCC that has recurred after surgery or for patients who are not candidates for surgery and radiation. Common adverse effects of vismodegib are muscle spasms, alopecia, dysgeusia, nausea, and weight loss. Muscle spasms worsen with duration of drug administration and may lead to drug discontinuation.

We report a case of vismodegib-related muscle spasm that was successfully treated with medical marijuana (MM).

During the first week of vismodegib and radiation, the patient started MM, having heard of its indication in the treatment of muscle cramps. She smoked 3 to 4 joints daily of Trainwreck strain, containing 18.6% tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), 0.0% cannabidiol (CBD), and 0.0% cannabinol. Her muscle spasms resolved immediately. She continued MM for 3.5 weeks, until the cost of MM became prohibitive. She reported no adverse effects from MM. Complete resolution of muscle spasms was sustained through the remaining 3.5 weeks of vismodegib. Complete blood count, comprehensive metabolic panel, and lactate dehydrogenase level were monitored throughout the study with no significant changes. As of 18 months posttreatment, the patient had a complete clinical response of her BCC.

One marijuana joint contains, on average, 0.66 g of marijuana, although the definition of a joint is highly variable. With any MM formulation, patients should start at a low dose and gradually titrate to effect. Additional studies could confirm safety and efficacy and better specify the optimal cannabinoid subtypes, preparations, and dosages that may be most beneficial for vismodegib-induced muscle spasms.”

http://www.jaadcasereports.org/article/S2352-5126(17)30124-8/fulltext

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[Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol-cannabidiol in the treatment of spasticity in chronic spinal cord injury: a clinical experience].

:Image result for Rev Neurol.

“Spasticity in chronic spinal cord injury is a condition that can have negative repercussions on the patient’s quality of life. Its treatment is complex and sometimes the outcome is insufficient.

Cannabinoids have recently been used in multiple sclerosis to successfully treat spasticity that is refractory to other therapies.

AIM:

To quantify the clinical response of a group of patients with spastic chronic spinal cord injury to the orally administered drug delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol-cannabidiol (Sativex ®) as medication for use in special situations.

RESULTS:

Fifteen patients took part in this study. A significant improvement was observed on three of the scales recorded: modified Ashworth scale (z = -2.97; p = 0.003), Penn spasm frequency scale (z = -2.76; p = 0.006) and Numeric Rating Scale (z = -3.21; p = 0.001).

CONCLUSIONS:

Sativex can be considered an alternative in patients with spasticity associated with chronic spinal cord injury for whom other therapeutic measures have been insufficient. Further studies need to be conducted before the use of this drug can be recommended and so as to define a complete profile of its long-term side effects.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28929471

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Results of a Double-Blind, Randomized, Placebo-Controlled Study of Nabiximols Oromucosal Spray as Adjunctive Therapy in Advanced Cancer Patients With Chronic Uncontrolled Pain.

Journal of Pain and Symptom Management Home

“Prior phase 2/3 studies found that cannabinoids might provide adjunctive analgesia in advanced cancer patients with uncontrolled pain.

To assess adjunctive nabiximols (Sativex®), an extract of Cannabis sativa containing two potentially therapeutic cannabinoids (Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol and cannabidiol, in advanced cancer patients with chronic pain unalleviated by optimized opioid therapy.

Nabiximols was statistically superior to placebo on two of three quality-of-life instruments at week 3 and on all three at week 5.

The safety profile of nabiximols was consistent with earlier studies.

Although not superior to placebo on the primary efficacy endpoint, nabiximols had benefits on multiple secondary endpoints, particularly in US patients.

Nabiximols might have utility in patients with advanced cancer who receive a lower opioid dose, such as individuals with early intolerance to opioid therapy.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28923526

http://www.jpsmjournal.com/article/S0885-3924(17)30465-7/fulltext

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Piperine-pro-nanolipospheres as a novel oral delivery system of cannabinoids: Pharmacokinetic evaluation in healthy volunteers in comparison to buccal spray administration.

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“Nowadays, therapeutic indications for cannabinoids, specifically Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and Cannabidiol (CBD) are widening. However, the oral consumption of the molecules is very limited due to their highly lipophilic nature that leads to poor solubility at the aqueous environment. Additionally, THC and CBD are prone to extensive first pass mechanisms. These absorption obstacles render the molecules with low and variable oral bioavailability. To overcome these limitations we designed and developed the advanced pro-nanolipospheres (PNL) formulation. The PNL delivery system is comprised of a medium chain triglyceride, surfactants, a co-solvent and the unique addition of a natural absorption enhancer: piperine. Piperine was selected due to its distinctive inhibitory properties affecting both Phase I and Phase II metabolism. This constellation self emulsifies into nano particles that entrap the cannabinoids and the piperine in their core and thus improve their solubility while piperine and the other PNL excipients inhibit their intestinal metabolism. Another clear advantage of the formulation is its composition of materials approved for human consumption. The safe nature of the excipients enabled their direct evaluation in humans. In order to evaluate the pharmacokinetic profile of the THC-CBD-piperine-PNL formulation, a two-way crossover, single administration clinical study was conducted. The trial comprised of 9 healthy volunteers under fasted conditions. Each subject received a THC-CBD (1:1, 10mg) piperine (20mg)-PNL filled capsule and an equivalent dose of the oromucosal spray Sativex® with a washout period in between treatments. Single oral administration of the piperine-PNL formulation resulted in a 3-fold increase in Cmax and a 1.5-fold increase in AUC for THC when compared to Sativex®. For CBD, a 4-fold increase in Cmax and a 2.2-fold increase in AUC was observed. These findings demonstrate the potential this formulation has in serving as a standardized oral cannabinoid formulation. Moreover, the concept of improving oral bioavailability described here, can pave the way for other potential lipophilic active compounds requiring enhancement of their oral bioavailability.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28890215

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S016836591730843X

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Medical Marijuana Helps Kids With Cerebral Palsy, Israeli Study Finds

Medical marijuana plants (illustrative)

“Medical marijuana significantly improved the condition of children suffering from cerebral palsy, a study by Wolfson Medical Center near Tel Aviv has found. According to the interim findings, treatment with cannabis oil reduced the disorder’s symptoms and improved the children’s motor skills. It also improved the kids’ sleep quality, bowel movements and general mood.

“The THC’s effect is especially relevant to motor function, whether it’s Parkinson’s disease or other motor symptoms,” says Bar-Lev Schleider. “But the THC is also responsible for the psycho-active effect, so we picked a variety that also has a lot of CBD, which moderates the euphoric effect.”
One group of children was treated with oil with a 1:6 ratio of THC to CBD, while for another group the ratio was 1:20.
“According to the interim findings both oils are effective,” says Bar-Lev Schleider.”
http://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/.premium-1.811010

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Cannabis constituent synergy in a mouse neuropathic pain model.

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“Cannabis and its psychoactive constituent Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) have efficacy against neuropathic pain however, this is hampered by their side-effects. It has been suggested that co-administration with another major constituent cannabidiol (CBD) might enhance the analgesic actions of THC and minimise its deleterious side-effects.

We examined the basis for this phytocannabinoid interaction in a mouse chronic constriction injury (CCI) model of neuropathic pain. Acute systemic administration of THC dose-dependently reduced CCI-induced mechanical and cold allodynia, but also produced motor incoordination, catalepsy and sedation. CBD produced a lesser dose-dependent reduction in allodynia, but did not produce the cannabinoid side-effects. When co-administered in a fixed ratio, THC and CBD produced a biphasic dose-dependent reduction in allodynia. At low doses, the THC:CBD combination displayed a 200-fold increase in anti-allodynic potency, but had lower efficacy compared to that predicted for an additive drug interaction. By contrast, high THC:CBD doses had lower potency, but greater anti-allodynic efficacy compared to that predicted for an additive interaction. Only the high dose THC:CBD anti-allodynia was associated with cannabinoid side-effects and these were similar to those of THC alone. Unlike THC, the low dose THC:CBD anti-allodynia was not cannabinoid receptor mediated.

These findings demonstrate that CBD synergistically enhances the pain relieving actions of THC in an animal neuropathic pain model, but has little impact on the THC-induced side-effects. This suggests that low dose THC:CBD combination treatment has potential in the treatment of neuropathic pain.”

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Clinical and Pre-Clinical Evidence for Functional Interactions of Cannabidiol and Δ9-Tetrahydrocannabinol.

Image result for neuropsychopharmacology

“The plant Cannabis sativa, commonly called cannabis or marijuana, has been used for its psychotropic and mind-altering side effects for millennia. There has been growing attention in recent years on its potential therapeutic efficacy as municipalities and legislative bodies in the United States, Canada, and other countries grapple with enacting policy to facilitate the use of cannabis or its constituents for medical purposes. There are over 550 chemical compounds and over 100 phytocannabinoids isolated from cannabis, including Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and Cannabidiol (CBD). THC is thought to produce the main psychoactive effects of cannabis, while CBD does not appear to have similar effects. Studies conflict as to whether CBD attenuates or exacerbates the behavioral and cognitive effects of THC. This includes effects of CBD on THC induced anxiety, psychosis and cognitive deficits. In this article, we review the available evidence on the pharmacology and behavioral interactions of THC and CBD from pre-clinical and human studies particularly with reference to anxiety and psychosis like symptoms. Both THC and CBD, as well as other cannabinoid molecules, are currently being evaluated for medicinal purposes, separately and in combination. Future cannabis-related policy decisions should include consideration of scientific findings including the individual and interactive effects of CBD and THC.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28875990

https://www.nature.com/npp/journal/vaop/naam/abs/npp2017209a.html

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A selective review of medical cannabis in cancer pain management.

“Insufficient management of cancer-associated chronic and neuropathic pain adversely affects patient quality of life. Patients who do not respond well to opioid analgesics, or have severe side effects from the use of traditional analgesics are in need of alternative therapeutic op-tions.

Anecdotal evidence suggests that medical cannabis has potential to effectively manage pain in this patient population.

This review presents a selection of representative clinical studies, from small pilot studies conducted in 1975, to double-blind placebo-controlled trials conducted in 2014 that evaluated the efficacy of cannabinoid-based therapies containing tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD) for reducing cancer-associated pain. A review of literature published on Medline between 1975 and 2017 identified five clinical studies that evaluated the effect of THC or CBD on controlling cancer pain, which have been reviewed and summarised.

Five studies that evaluated THC oil capsules, THC:CBD oromucosal spray (nabiximols), or THC oromucosal sprays found some evidence of cancer pain reduction associated with these therapies. A variety of doses ranging from 2.7-43.2 mg/day THC and 0-40 mg/day CBD were administered. Higher doses of THC were correlated with increased pain relief in some studies. One study found that significant pain relief was achieved in doses as low as 2.7-10.8 mg THC in combination with 2.5-10.0 mg CBD, but there was conflicting evidence on whether higher doses provide superior pain relief. Some reported side effects include drowsiness, hypotension, mental clouding, and nausea and vomiting.

There is evidence suggesting that medical cannabis reduces chronic or neu-ropathic pain in advanced cancer patients.

However, the results of many studies lacked statistical power, in some cases due to limited number of study subjects. Therefore, there is a need for the conduct of further double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trials with large sample sizes in order to establish the optimal dosage and efficacy of different cannabis-based therapies.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28866904

http://apm.amegroups.com/article/view/16199

 

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Can You Pass the Acid Test? Critical Review and Novel Therapeutic Perspectives of Δ9-Tetrahydrocannabinolic Acid A.

Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. publishers

“Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinolic acid A (THCA-A) is the acidic precursor of Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the main psychoactive compound found in Cannabis sativa. THCA-A is biosynthesized and accumulated in glandular trichomes present on flowers and leaves, where it serves protective functions and can represent up to 90% of the total THC contained in the plant. THCA-A slowly decarboxylates to form THC during storage and fermentation and can further degrade to cannabinol. Decarboxylation also occurs rapidly during baking of edibles, smoking, or vaporizing, the most common ways in which the general population consumes Cannabis. Contrary to THC, THCA-A does not elicit psychoactive effects in humans and, perhaps for this reason, its pharmacological value is often neglected. In fact, many studies use the term “THCA” to refer indistinctly to several acid derivatives of THC. Despite this perception, many in vitro studies seem to indicate that THCA-A interacts with a number of molecular targets and displays a robust pharmacological profile that includes potential anti-inflammatory, immunomodulatory, neuroprotective, and antineoplastic properties. Moreover, the few in vivo studies performed with THCA-A indicate that this compound exerts pharmacological actions in rodents, likely by engaging type-1 cannabinoid (CB1) receptors. Although these findings may seem counterintuitive due to the lack of cannabinoid-related psychoactivity, a careful perusal of the available literature yields a plausible explanation to this conundrum and points toward novel therapeutic perspectives for raw, unheated Cannabis preparations in humans.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28861488

http://online.liebertpub.com/doi/10.1089/can.2016.0008

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