Recovering drug and alcohol addicts may be able to stay clean with the help of non-psychoactive cannabis, new research suggests.
A preclinical study published in the medical journal Neuropsychopharmacology finds that the therapeutic compound found in marijuana, cannabidiol (CBD), can help control impulses to use addictive drugs such as alcohol and cocaine, reports Science Daily.
An investigative team at the Scripps Research Institute studied rats with a history of using alcohol or cocaine daily on their own, leading to behavior associated with addiction. The researchers applied a CBD gel to the rats once per day, and reported that CBD effectively reduced relapse provoked by stress and drug cues. The drug-experienced rats also experienced a reduction in anxiety and impulsivity.
The rats were examined five months after being administered CBD, and still showed signs of a reduced relapse. The result was unexpected, considering that CBD was completely cleared from the brain and plasma of the rats only three days after completing therapy.
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