Credit: © AH Photos WPG / Fotolia

Credit: © AH Photos WPG / Fotolia

Cannabis compound may help treat schizophrenia

A cannabis compound may help treat schizophrenia, according to a new study from the Illawarra Health and Medical Research Institute.

Medical marijuana is increasing in popularity as a treatment for many conditions, including eating disorders, cancers, and pain. It is becoming legal in more and more states.

With marijuana being more widely accepted in the U.S. for medical treatment, research has also gone up.

Current traditional medication for schizophrenia is not very effective for treating cognitive symptoms such as reduced social interaction, reduced speaking, and numbed feelings.

Also, some drugs can lead to serious side effects.

This is why the researchers looked at a compound called cannabidiol (CBD) and its effects on schizophrenia.

The researchers – led by Dr. Katrina Green from the University of Wollongong, Australia first discovered the health benefits of CBD from a review of previous studies..

From this review, we found that CBD will not improve learning and memory in healthy brains, but may improve aspects of learning and memory in illnesses associated with cognitive impairment, including Alzheimer’s disease, as well as neurological and neuro-inflammatory disorders,” explains Dr. Green.

Evidence suggests that CBD is neuroprotective and can reduce cognitive impairment associated with use of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the main psychoactive component of cannabis,” Dr. Green adds.

The researchers tested CBD on rats:

We found that CBD was able to restore recognition and working memory, as well as social behavior to normal levels. These findings are interesting because they suggest that CBD may be able to treat some of the symptoms of schizophrenia that are seemingly resistant to existing medications. In addition, CBD treatment did not alter body weight or food intake, which are common side effects of antipsychotic drug treatment.”

The study showing that cannabis compound may help treat schizophrenia was published in the journal Neuropsychopharmacology.

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REFERENCES:
1. “Cannabis-derived Compound May Help Treat Schizophrenia.” Medical News Today. MediLexicon International, 05 June 2017. Web. 19 June 2017.
2. “Improved Social Interaction, Recognition and Working Memory with Cannabidiol Treatment in a Prenatal Infection (poly I:C) Rat Model.” Neuropsychopharmacology : Official Publication of the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology.U.S. National Library of Medicine, June 2017. Web. 19 June 2017.

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