Annually, more than 25 million people worldwide are affected by Alzheimer’s disease.
Alzheimer’s disease is a brain disease in which cells cease to function in some parts of the brains and then die. The best known symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease are that memory and various other cognitive functions deteriorate. The disease is irreversible and incurable. However, there are drugs available that can help combat certain symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease .
Alzheimer’s and cannabinoids
There are several reasons why cannabinoids may be of interest for the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease. Cannabinoids are known for their activity against excitotoxicity. This is a disease process in which nerve cells are damaged or slain by excessive stimulation of certain neurotransmitters (such as glutamate). Cannabinoids also works against oxidative stress. Oxidative stress is an imbalance in the body between the production of free radicals and the ability of the body to counteract this process. Finally, cannabinoids such as CBD are known for their anti-inflammatory effect [2,3]. All these features make cannabinoids such as THC and CBD interesting as potential drugs for Alzheimer’s disease. Unfortunately, it is suspected that THC may also have a negative effect on Alzheimer’s, because it may worsen memory problems, something that is not true of CBD.
Not many scientific studies on the medical use of cannabinoids against Alzheimer’s disease have been performed.
Advise for using cannabinoids against Alzheimer’s
There are just a few scientific studies on the applications of cannabinoids in Alzheimer’s disease. There are presumptions that cannabinoids may help prevent or combat Alzheimer’s. These presumptions are based on the things we already know about the effect of cannabinoids. It is possible that the regular intake of cannabinoids (such as CBD) may help in the prevention of Alzheimer’s disease. More studies are needed to further investigate these presumptions. Click here to read more about safe use of cannabinoids.
- Gowran, A., Noonan, J., and Campbell, V.A. (2011). The multiplicity of action of cannabinoids: implications for treating neurodegeneration. CNS Neuroscience & Therapeutics, 17: 637-644.
- Karl, T., Cheng, D., Garner, B., and Arnold, J.C. (2012). The therapeutic potential of the endocannabinoid system for Alzheimer’s disease. Expert opinion in therapeutic targets, 16: 407-420.