Clinical Studies and Case Reports

On this site you will find clinical studies with cannabis or single cannabinoids in different diseases and case reports on the use of cannabis by patients.
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TitleAcute effects of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, cannabidiol and their combination on facial emotion recognition: a randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled study in cannabis users.
Author(s)Hindocha C, Freeman TP, Schafer G, Gardener C, Das RK, Morgan CJ, Curran HV.
Journal, Volume, IssueEur Neuropsychopharmacol. 2015 Mar;25(3):325-34.
Major outcome(s)Improvement of recognition of emotional facial affect by CBD and attenuation of the impairment induced by THC
IndicationAbstract
MedicationCannabis;Delta-9-THC;Cannabidiol

Acute administration of the primary psychoactive constituent of cannabis, Δ-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), impairs human facial affect recognition, implicating the endocannabinoid system in emotional processing. Another main constituent of cannabis, cannabidiol (CBD), has seemingly opposite functional effects on the brain. This study aimed to determine the effects of THC and CBD, both alone and in combination on emotional facial affect recognition. 48 volunteers, selected for high and low frequency of cannabis use and schizotypy, were administered, THC (8mg), CBD (16mg), THC+CBD (8mg+16mg) and placebo, by inhalation, in a 4-way, double-blind, placebo-controlled crossover design. They completed an emotional facial affect recognition task including fearful, angry, happy, sad, surprise and disgust faces varying in intensity from 20% to 100%. A visual analogue scale (VAS) of feeling 'stoned' was also completed. In comparison to placebo, CBD improved emotional facial affect recognition at 60% emotional intensity; THC was detrimental to the recognition of ambiguous faces of 40% intensity. The combination of THC+CBD produced no impairment. Relative to placebo, both THC alone and combined THC+CBD equally increased feelings of being 'stoned'. CBD did not influence feelings of 'stoned'. No effects of frequency of use or schizotypy were found. In conclusion, CBD improves recognition of emotional facial affect and attenuates the impairment induced by THC. This is the first human study examining the effects of different cannabinoids on emotional processing. It provides preliminary evidence that different pharmacological agents acting upon the endocannabinoid system can both improve and impair recognition of emotional faces.

Route(s)Oral
Dose(s)
Duration (days)
Participants48 healthy subjects
DesignControlled study
Type of publicationMedical journal
Address of author(s)Clinical Psychopharmacology Unit, University College London, United Kingdom. Electronic address: c.hindocha@ucl.ac.uk.
Full texthttp://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/?term=Acute+effects+of+delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol%2C+cannabidiol+and+their+combination+on+facial+emotion+recognition%3A+a+randomised%2C+double-blind%2C+placebo-controlled+study+in+cannabis+users

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