Israeli researchers are preparing for a pioneering study to gauge the impact of medical cannabis in treating autism.
Dr. Adi Eran, from the Shaare Zedek Medical Center, will head the research and is currently seeking permits from the country’s health ministry to begin the trial. Dr. Eran has already gained permission in principle.
120 low to medium functioning autistic patients will be involved, ranging in age from 4 – 30 years. The medicine to be administered will be high in non-intoxicating cannabidiol (CBD), but low in the psychoactive cannabinoid, THC (tetrahydrocannibinol). The patients will be split into two groups, with one group receiving the CBD and the other a placebo.
No doubt progress of the trials will be closely watched by many families around the world who struggle on a day-to-day basis in managing the condition. There is cause for hope in a positive outcomes from the research as a number of stories have emerged of parents treating autistic children with cannabis with success.
Further information on the topic can be found via the Autism and Compassionate Care Connection; a medical cannabis collective founded by parents of individuals with autism.
In other recent news from Israel, the country’s government has set its sights on exporting medicinal marijuana abroad – but it probably won’t happen for a couple of years.
Agriculture Minister Uri Ariel reportedly made the announcement early this week, stating he would approve a request for exporting Israeli product.
“In two years we will have protocols in place that will allow farmers to grow cannabis,” the Minister is quoted as saying.
“The Agriculture Ministry has set up specific areas for the research and trial of growing cannabis, a plant whose foremost use is the medical treatment of patients around the world.”
Israel has been making significant progress in loosening up medical marijuana regulations. In June this year, Israel’s Knesset gave the go-ahead to reforms enabling authorized patients to source their medicinal marijuana supply at pharmacies.
Approximately 23,000 Israelis are registered for the country’s medical cannabis program.
Trivia: Israel’s Dr. Raphael Mechoulam first isolated THC in 1964.