Trial to Investigate the Use of Cannabidiol to Treat Psychosis Induced by Parkinson’s

October 17, 2019 08:00:20

CBD has built quite a reputation in the few years it has been mainstream. The list of diseases CBD has in the past proven effective against spans from minor conditions such as anxiety and inflammation to severe ones like chronic pain and epilepsy. At this point, it’s anyone’s guess what else cannabidiol works against.

A new clinical trial will investigate the efficacy of CBD on patients who have Parkinson’s induced psychosis. Parkinson’s UK, in partnership with scientists at King’s College London, will lead the study, and it has invested €1.2 million ($1.3 million) in a Phase 2 clinical trial. Parkinson’s UK is the largest charitable funder of Parkinson’s research in Europe.

The project is part of the Parkinson’s Virtual Biotech, and it will focus on whether CBD can alleviate the symptoms of Parkinson’s induced psychosis. Around 150,000 people in the UK have Parkinson’s, and 50 – 60% of them will likely be affected by psychosis sometime in the future. The three and a half year-long project will be the first such study. The aim will be to provide evidence on the safety and efficiency of cannabidiol in managing the symptoms of Parkinson’s related psychosis that’s characterized by delusions and hallucinations.

These symptoms are usually handled by withdrawing the Parkinson’s medication. Antipsychotic drugs can be used if symptoms persist, but patients suffer worse motor symptoms and side effects from them. Additionally, the UK has no medicine licensed for Parkinson’s related psychosis. This leaves patients suffering from these symptoms in quite a conundrum.

According to Dr. Arthur Roach, Director of Research at Parkinson’s UK, results from a recent Parkinson’s UK survey shows that people with Parkinson’s would continue to use or would start using CBD products if robust evidence becomes available that it is safe and effective against the symptoms of Parkinson’s related psychosis.

The study starts recruitment next year, and it will kick off with a six-week pilot to assess the safety, tolerability, and effectiveness of pharmaceutical-grade CBD. Patients will receive 1,000 Mg/day of CBD in capsule form. The second stage will involve 120 psychosis afflicted people taking part in a 12 week double-blind, placebo-controlled study. Detailed assessments of psychotic, motor and non-motor symptoms, and brain imaging will be used to investigate the effects of the CBD treatments.

Professor Sagnik Bhattacharya, Professor of Transactional Neuroscience and Psychiatry at King’s College London, hopes that this unique trial will demonstrate the potential of CBD to alleviate the symptoms of this condition and bring us one step closer to delivering a treatment that will improve the quality of life for those affected.

Experts are of the view that CBD companies like HTC Extraction Systems (TSX.V: HTC) and The Supreme Cannabis Company Inc. (TSX.V: FIRE) (OTCQX: SPRWF) look forward to the findings of this research since they will provide further credence for the industry.

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