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IACM-Bulletin of January 15, 2023

Authors
Franjo Grotenhermen M.D.

🏷️ Science/Human — Cannabis legalisation has no relevant effects on psychiatric disorders according to a twin study

Using data from a longitudinal study with 4043 twins from the USA, investigators from the Universities of Minnesota and Colorado, USA, and the University of Helsinki, Finland, found that the legalisation of cannabis in the USA had no relevant effects on a wide range of adult psychiatric and psychosocial outcomes. The participants were first assessed in adolescence and now at the age of 24-49 residing in states with different cannabis policies (40% resided in a recreationally legal state).

In the co-twin control design accounting for earlier cannabis frequency and alcohol use disorder symptoms respectively, the twin living in a recreational state used cannabis on average more often, and had fewer symptoms of alcohol use disorder than their co-twin living in a non-recreational state. “Cannabis legalization was associated with no other adverse outcome in the co-twin design, including cannabis use disorder,” authors wrote. “No risk factor significantly interacted with legalization status to predict any outcome.… Vulnerabilities to cannabis use were not exacerbated by the legal cannabis environment.”

Zellers SM, Ross JM, Saunders GRB, Ellingson JM, Walvig T, Anderson JE, Corley RP, Iacono W, Hewitt JK, Hopfer CJ, McGue MK, Vrieze S. Recreational cannabis legalization has had limited effects on a wide range of adult psychiatric and psychosocial outcomes. Psychol Med. 2023 Jan 5:1-10.

🏷️ Science/Human — Cannabis may be helpful in hyperhidrosis according to a case report

A 31-year-old man with treatment resistant hyperhidrosis was successfully treated with cannabis. He suffered from the disease for about 20 years and had tried all available standard treatment without relevant success. Treatment with cannabis flowers at a centre for cannabis medicine in Steinheim, Germany, effectively stopped excessive sweating, and the patient was able to lead a normal life.

The author concluded from the case report and a literature review: “THC shows anticholinergic effects, which can be used for the therapy of primary or secondary hyperhidrosis. In individual cases, CBD could also be helpful.” Primary hyperhidrosis generally begins between the ages of 14-25 years and is usually restricted to certain areas of the body, mainly axillae, soles of the feet, palms and face. Generalized sweating indicates secondary hyperhidrosis, for example due to cancer.

Grotenhermen F. Case in Context: Hyperhidrosis. Cannabis Cannabinoid Res. 2022 Dec 30. [in press].

🏷️ Science/Human — Cannabis may be helpful in resistant agitation in dementia according to a case report

Investigators of the Department of Medicine of Tulane University School of Medicine in New Orleans, USA, presented the case of an 85-year-old man with dementia with Lewy bodies with worsening aggression refractory to antipsychotic management.

After exhausting other options and in the setting of worsening agitation, a tincture of THC was prescribed. After starting THC tincture, the patient's behavior rapidly improved, and he was discharged home to the care of his spouse.

Ramm RM, Lerner ZI, Levy-Meeks GS, Burke RV, Raven MC, Song A, Glass MH. A Case Report of Treatment-Resistant Agitation in Dementia with Lewy Bodies: Medical Marijuana as an Alternative to Antipsychotics. J Palliat Med. 2022 Dec 26.. [in press].

🌐 Australia — The medical use of cannabis increases in Australia

There has been a notable shift away from illicit cannabis use in favour of medically prescribed cannabis in Australia. Experts say safety is the main driving force behind the change.

A study of medical cannabis use in the Australian community found that between 2018 and 2019, only 2.7% of users had accessed legally prescribed medicinal cannabis. The 2020 iteration of that survey uncovered a significant increase, and 37.6% of respondents said they'd used prescribed medicinal cannabis within the last year.

Globe Newswire of 10 January 2023

News in brief

🏷️ Science/Animal — The endocannabinoid system plays an important for the brain-cerebrospinal fluid barriers

In a mouse model of traumatic brain injury investigators found, that “endocannabinoids and their metabolizing enzymes play an important role in the brain and BCB integrity and highlight the need for more extensive studies on these mechanisms.” (BCB = brain-cerebrospinal fluid barriers)

Department of Neurosurgery, Medical College of Georgia, Augusta University, Augusta, USA.

Ahluwalia M, et al. Exp Neurol. 2023:114320.

🏷️ Science/Animal — Cannabigerol has anti-inflammatory properties in liver diseases

In a study with mice CBG (Cannabigerol) alleviated hepatic fibrosis and inflammation in non-alcoholic liver steatosis.

Division of Microbiology and Immunology, Department of Pathology, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, USA.

Aljobaily N, et al. Nutrients. 2022;15(1):178.

🏷️ Science/Human — CBD did not have broad cognitive effects in cannabis use disorder

In a placebo-controlled study with people with cannabis use disorder, who received either placebo (23 participants), 400 mg CBD (24) are 800 mg CBD (23) “CBD did not have broad cognitive effects but 800 mg daily treatment may improve working memory manipulation."

Addiction and Mental Health Group, Department of Psychology, University of Bath, UK.

Lees R, et al. Psychopharmacology (Berl). 2023 Jan 4. [in press].

🏷️ Science/Animal — CBD reduces the “cytokine storm” in inflammation

In a sepsis mouse model CBD (cannabidiol) protected from injury to heart and kidneys by reducing pro-inflammatory cytokines. Authors noted that “this study suggest that CBD could be repurposed to reduce morbidity in patients with cytokine storm particularly in severe infections such as sepsis.

Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, College of Pharmacy, Doha, Qatar.

Maayah ZH, et al. Cannabis Cannabinoid Res. 2022 Dec 30. [in press].

🏷️ Science/Human — There is an increase of ingestion of cannabis edibles by children in the US

By using the National Poison Data System investigators found “a consistent increase in pediatric edible cannabis exposures over the past 5 years, with the potential for significant toxicity.”

Department of Emergency Medicine, Southern Illinois University School of Medicine, Springfield, USA.

Tweet MS, et al. Pediatrics. 2023:e2022057761.

🏷️ Science/Animal — Cannabidivarin (CBDV) may be useful in Parkinson’s disease

Basic research with a nematode (Caenorhabditis elegans) reveals “a potential for the development of CBDV as a drug candidate” for the treatment of Parkinson’s disease.

College of Life Science and Technology, Changchun University of Science and Technology, China.

Wang F, et al. FASEB J. 2023;37(2):e22735.

🏷️ Science/Animal — CBD reduces the severity of gastrointestinal symptoms of opioid withdrawal

In a study with male and female mice CBD (cannabidiol) was shown to reduce the severity of gastrointestinal symptoms in both sexes.

Brain and Mind Centre, The University of Sydney, Australia.

Scicluna RL, et al. Cannabis Cannabinoid Res. 2022 Dec 27. [in press].

🏷️ Science/Animal — Activation of CB1 receptor reduces aggression

According to a study with zebrafish activation of the CB1 receptor may “represent a potential target for the development of treatments for aggressive disorders.” Investigators used a synthetic cannabinoid.

Laboratory of Experimental Neuropharmacology, Institute of Biological Sciences, Federal University of Pará, Belém, Brazil.

Pinheiro EF, et al. Cannabis Cannabinoid Res. 2022 Dec 26. [in press].

🏷️ Science/Animal — CBD reduced the severity of inflammation in a mouse model of multiple sclerosis

Fluoxetine and CBD reduced the severity of symptoms in a mouse model of multiple sclerosis called experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis. Authors concluded that “combinatory treatments of these two agents are suggested for future investigations.”

Department of Anatomy, School of Medicine, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.

Akhavan Tavakoli M, et al. Mol Neurobiol. 2022 Dec 28. [in press].

🏷️ Science/Cells — CBD may inhibit the metabolism of nicotine and influence tobacco addiction

In a study with cells and human liver tissue investigators found that CBD significantly inhibits nicotine metabolism “potentially impacting tobacco addiction and cessation.”

Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Washington State University, USA.

Nasrin S, et al. Chem Res Toxicol. 2023 Jan 10. [in press].