New Drug Can Help Cannabinoids Ease Alzheimer’s Symptoms
Alzheimer’s disease patients have just completed trials of a new drug that may improve some of their symptoms when combined with existing cannabinoid treatments.
SciSparc, an Israeli company, has developed an oral treatment that improves the effect of cannabinoids, chemicals in marijuana that cause drug-like effects in the body’s central nervous system.
The results found that six out of eight patients who used the treatment twice daily experienced less agitation, and an increase in appetite.
The medication, SCI-110, combines a synthetic form of THC (dronabinol) with the fatty acid PEA, which is used to treat pain. It was designed to improve the uptake of THC by stimulating the body’s cannabinoid receptors.
This could potentially decrease the dose of cannabinoid-based medications Alzheimer’s patients use, as well as reduce side effects to these existing medications, when combined with SCI-110.
As Alzheimer’s disease worsens and severs the connection between neurons in the brain, patients experience symptoms like agitation, psychosis, poor appetite, and insomnia. No drugs are approved to treat agitation in Alzheimer’s, and SciSparc believes it is an unmet need.
The company additionally said that the patients did not experience a negative response to the medication throughout the duration of the trial.
The trial was conducted at the Israeli Medical Center for Alzheimer’s, in Ramat Gan, near Tel Aviv.
SciSparc is developing several treatments that utilize natural and synthetic cannabinoids to increase the effects of cannabinoid-based treatments. Its products are being developed to treat pain, as well as address symptoms experienced by people with autism and epilepsy.
SciSparc was founded in 2004, and is based in Givatayim, central Israel.