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Is the Cannabidiol Potentially Useful for the Treatment of Neuropsychiatric and Drug-Use Disorders?

Author(s): Manzanares J, Garcia-Gutierrez MS

Preclinical and clinical evidence collected over the past years suggests that Cannabidiol (CBD), one of the main compounds of the plant Cannabis sativa, presents potential therapeutic activity for the treatment of neuropsychiatric and drug-use disorders. Studies carried out in animal models revealed that CBD presents anxiolytic-like effects in different paradigms such as the Vogel conflict test [1], the elevated plus maze test [2] and the fear conditioning test [3-6]. Antidepressant-like effects were reported in mice following acute or repeated CBD administration in the forced swim [7] and in the tail suspension tests [8]. In addition, CBD decreased defensive behaviors evoked by predator exposure, a proposed model of panic attacks and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) [9,10]. Interestingly, CBD reversed the alteration of prepulse inhibition (PPI) observed in spontaneously hypertensive rats [11] and in a glutamate-based models of psychosis [12] and exhibited a similar profile compared with atypical antipsychotic drugs [13,14]. Indeed, CBD improved cognition in several preclinical models of cognitive impairment [15]. Recent evidences pointed out that CBD might be a potential treatment for drug-use disorders. CBD reduced heroin craving and relapse [16], and cocaine [17] and alcohol consumption mice [18]. In clinical studies, CBD reduced anxiety and the psychotic-like symptoms induced by Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (9-THC) [19]. Indeed, CBD reduced anxiety in healthy volunteers [20-22], in treatment-naïve social phobic patients [23] and in posttraumatic stress disorder [24]. Also, CBD reduced the psychotic symptoms in schizophrenia [25,26] and in Parkinson´s disease [27,28].

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