Childhood Epilepsy – A brighter future with cannabinoid treatments
New medicines may be on the horizon for children with Dravet Syndrome, a severe form of epilepsy.
The University of Sydney recently published a study in the British Journal of Pharmacology discussing their research on novel cannabinoids as treatment for epilepsy. Cannabidiol (CBD) is becoming a commonplace treatment for epilepsy, however Dravet Syndrome is an especially challenging form that is generally not receptive to conventional treatments.
The study was performed on mice, testing the efficacy of phytocannabinoids on hypothermic-induced seizures. While the current CBD treatments are effective, the study showed acidic cannabinoids (CBGA, CBGVA, CBDVA) have anticonvulsive properties.
While testing was done in isolation (each cannabinoid tested independent of another), Lyndsey Anderson, the study’s lead author, notes that a combination of cannabinoids may prove to have better effects. Anderson also notes that higher dose can actually have a pro-convulsant effect on other forms of epilepsy, reiterating that what is right for some, may not be right for others (an important lesson for all cannabis consumers).
Although the study shows promise, and is an important step to better understand the true medicinal capacity of cannabis, more research and testing is needed for acidic cannabinoids to usurp CBD as the go-to plant based treatment for epilepsy.