A Randomized, Controlled Trial of Cannabis in Healthy Volunteers Evaluating Simulated Driving, Field Performance Tests and Cannabinoid Levels

INVESTIGATORS: Thomas Marcotte, Ph.D. & Barth Wilsey, M.D.

STUDY LOCATION: University of California, San Diego

PROJECT TITLE: A Randomized, Controlled Trial of Cannabis in Healthy Volunteers Evaluating Simulated Driving, Field Performance Tests and Cannabinoid Levels

PROJECT TYPE: Clinical Study

STATUS: ACTIVE

ABSTRACT:

This study was authorized by the California Legislature (Assembly Bill 266, the Medical Marijuana Regulation and Safety Act) to help with detection of driving under the influence of cannabis. Healthy volunteers will inhale smoked cannabis with either 0% (placebo), 6.7%, or 12.6% Δ9-THC at the beginning of the day, and then complete driving simulations, iPad-based performance assessments, and bodily fluid draws (e.g., blood, saliva, breath) before the cannabis smoking and hourly over the subsequent 7 hours after cannabis smoking. The purpose is to determine (1) the relationship of the dose of Δ9-THC on driving performance and (2) the duration of driving impairment in terms of hours from initial use, (3) if saliva or expired air can serve as a useful substitute for blood sampling of Δ9-THC in judicial hearings and (4) if testing using an iPad can serve as a useful adjunct to the standardized field sobriety test in identifying acute impairment from cannabis.

 

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Study to Examine Possible Effects of Cannabis Compound for Common Movement Disorder

Press Release, UC San Diego Health, September 18, 2018

Researchers at University of California School of Medicine are preparing to launch a novel clinical trial to examine the safety, efficacy and pharmacological properties of cannabis as a potential treatment for adults with essential tremor (ET). Currently, ET is treated using repurposed medications originally developed for high blood pressure or seizures. Surgery is another option.

Scheduled for early 2019, the phase I/II trial will assess efficacy and tolerability of an oral cannabis formulation comprised of cannabidiol (CBD) and low-dose tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). Researchers say it will be the first time this combination has been studied for treatment of ET.

“This study will provide key insights,” said Fatta Nahab, MD, neurologist at UC San Diego Health and associate professor of neurosciences at UC San Diego School of Medicine. “If found to be safe and effective, cannabis would not only serve as an exciting new addition to the limited treatment options currently available for patients with ET, but it might also provide scientists with new insights on essential tremor.”

Read the full press release here


Cannabis for Chronic Nerve Pain: Mechanism Revealed?

Damian McNamara, Medscape, September 7, 2018

New imaging findings show how tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the psychoactive component of cannabis, works in the brain to effectively treat chronic neuropathic pain.

Results of a small randomized, double-blind, crossover trial show that THC-induced pain relief was associated with reduced functional connectivity between the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) and the sensorimotor cortex.

"The main message of this paper is that THC, the psychoactive component in cannabis, does seem to exert a beneficial effect on proven chronic nerve pain.

This effect seems to involve a breakdown in functional connectivity between brain regions that process different dimensions that construct the experience of pain," study author Haggai Sharon, MD, who leads the Consciousness & Psychopharmacology research team at Sagol Brain Institute, Tel Aviv, Israel, told Medscape Medical News.

Read the article here


Cannabis Compound May Help Reduce Symptoms of Psychosis

Bob Curley, Healthline, September 5, 2018

Chronic marijuana use has been linked to increased risk of psychiatric problems. There’s even a name for the condition — cannabis-induced psychosis (CIP).

A new study, however, shows that a nonpsychoactive compound found in cannabis seems to reduce abnormal brain functions associated with psychosis, which includes diseases such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.

Researchers at King’s College London report in the journal JAMA Psychiatry that a single dose of cannabidiol (CBD) could someday be an effective alternative to the antipsychotic drugs in use since the 1950s.

These include Thorazine and Haldol, which have limited effectiveness and can cause serious side effects.

“It’s clear that the existing drugs have provided a lot of patients with schizophrenia the ability to function in society, but they’re not a cure,” Dr. Igor Grant, chair of the department of psychiatry at the University of California at San Diego School of Medicine and director of the school’s Center for Medicinal Cannabis Research, told Healthline.

Read the story here


More News

Click here to access the CMCR news archives.

Igor Grant, MD

Introduction/Overview
CMCR Symposium, June 2018


Daniele Piomelli, MD, PhD, PharmD

The health impact of cannabis
CMCR Symposium, June 2018


Ziva Cooper, PhD

Therapeutic potential of cannabis for pain alone and as an adjunct to opioids
CMCR Symposium, June 2018


Iain McGregor, PhD

Medicinal cannabis research down under: Introducing the Lambert Initiative for Cannabinoid Therapeutics
CMCR Symposium, June 2018


Thomas Marcotte, PhD

Cannabis and public safety: The challenge of cannabis-impaired driving
CMCR Symposium, June 2018


Alan Budney, PhD

Medicinal cannabis / legalization and the development of cannabis use problems
CMCR Symposium, June 2018


Ryan Vandrey, PhD

What's in real-world cannabis?
CMCR Symposium, June 2018


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