Small Doses of Cannabis Slow the Progression of Alzheimer's Disease, Study Finds

Photo Credit: Medical Marijuana Inc.

Photo Credit: Medical Marijuana Inc.

According to a study conducted by neuroscientists from the University of South Florida and published in the Journal of Alzheimer's Disease, extremely small amounts of THC inhibited the production of amyloid-beta proteins on a cellular model of Alzheimer's disease, suggesting the cannabinoids could benefit those who suffer from Alzheimer's disease. Additionally, THC enhanced mitochondrial function, which helped cells in supplying energy and transmitting signals, and helped in maintaining their health.

Lead author of the study, Chuanhai Cao, PhD, explains, "THC is known to be a potent antioxidant with neuroprotective properties, but this is the first report that the compound directly affects Alzheimer’s pathology by decreasing amyloid beta levels, inhibiting its aggregation, and enhancing mitochondrial function... Decreased levels of amyloid beta means less aggregation, which may protect against the progression of Alzheimer’s disease. Since THC is a natural and relatively safe amyloid inhibitor, THC or its analogs may help us develop an effective treatment in the future.”

This is not the first study suggesting cannabis can help in the treatment of Alzheimer's disease, with earlier studies finding THC breaks down the buildup of beta-amyloid protein plaques and reduces cell inflammation, or that THC restores memory and cognitive abilities. This information has been provided by Medical Marijuana Inc. and approved by our Chief Medical Officer.