Cannabidiol (CBD) may prove to be effective in treating psychosis according to a new study. The Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) has found that even a single dose of CBD could reduce symptoms associated with psychosis by “resetting” activity in three key areas of the brain.
The JAMA study involved 33 participants who were suffering from psychosis. There was also a control group made up of healthy individuals. About half of the those experiencing symptoms of psychosis were given 600 mg of an oral dose of CBD. Researchers then performed brain scans and compared the images between the healthy control group and those with psychosis that did not take CBD. As expected, the brain scans showed notable differences. But when the non-psychosis group was compared with those who were administered CBD, the difference in the brains scans was far less significant.
“The results have started unraveling the brain mechanisms of a new drug that works in a completely different way to traditional anti-psychotics,” said the study’s lead author Dr. Sagnik Bhattacharyya from the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience at King’s College, London according to Forbes.
The study is small and researchers will want to see these results repeated in future studies before they can draw definitive conclusions on CBD’s potential to treat psychosis. Bhattacharyya also questioned the longevity of CBD’s impact and wondered if they would fade over time.
Despite the limitations, Bhattacharyya was encouraged at the possibility of CBD being used to treat psychosis.
“There is an urgent need for a safe treatment for young people at risk of psychosis,” added Dr. Bhattacharyya. “One of the main advantages of cannabidiol is that it is safe and seems to be very well tolerated, making it in some ways an ideal treatment.”
CBD has received considerable attention and praise in recent years. However, much of the focus has been on consumer items. This study, in combination with future research, could open up whole new applications for CBD.