Cannabis Showing Promise For Treating Dermatitis In Dogs

CannPal DermaCann and dogs
Image: Katrina_S

A cannabis-based formulation developed by Australia’s CannPal (ASX:CP1) has substantially reduced atopic dermatitis severity in dogs participating in clinical trial.

Atopic dermatitis is triggered by an allergic reaction after a dog ingests or inhales a substance they are sensitive to. As well as being an uncomfortable condition, repeated licking or scratching of an affected area can result in more serious issues, including infection.

According to CannPal, its DermaCann treatment substantially reduced Canine Atopic Dermatitis Extent and Severity Index (CADESI)-4 scoring  by an average of 51% after 56 days of treatment. Importantly, the DermaCann treatment was well tolerated by all dogs, with no significant adverse events reported throughout the 8-week study.

30 dogs were expected to participate in the trial, but due to COVID-19 related restrictions only 13 dogs successfully completed treatment. While only a small number, CannPal says the differences between placebo and treatment indicate a “substantive and clinically relevant result.”

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Of the 13 dogs, 8 dogs received DermaCann, while 5 were allocated the placebo. Dogs were dosed twice daily over the 56-day period and the placebo group saw a slight increase in CADESI-4 scoring.

“We’re extremely pleased to see such positive results from this study, which will support our authorisations for DermaCann® in various markets,” said CannPal Head of R&D, Dr Margaret Curtis.

The company will be seeking to register DermaCann as a nutraceutical for healthy skin and immune function for dogs in multiple markets, rather than as a medicine. As for when DermaCann might be available in Australia, the company notes it still needs to complete its Target Animal Safety study, which is a regulatory requirement for the registration of the product in Australia and New Zealand. CannPal anticipates a commencement date for this trial in the second half of this year.

Dermacann, which has been in development for three years, contains cannabidiol (CBD) extracted from hemp plants. Unlike the cannabinoid THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) that dogs are very sensitive to, CBD doesn’t appear to be problematic for our canine pals when used appropriately – but it should never be administered without first discussing with a vet.

CannPal has a goal of being global leader in the development of therapeutic products for companion animals, using plant compounds that act on the endocannabinoid system.

Learn more about cannabidiol and pets.