Study: Oral CBD Administration Associated With Symptom Mitigation In Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder

Tel Aviv, Israel: The administration of plant-derived oral extracts containing cannabidiol (CBD) is associated with overall improvement in subjects with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), according to clinical trial data published in the journal Frontiers in Pharmacology.

Israeli researchers assessed the use of oral cannabinoid extracts in a cohort of 53 patients (median age of 11) with ASD over a period of at least one month. Oral extracts contained a 1 to 20 ratio of plant-derived CBD to THC. Subjects had no experience with cannabinoid treatment prior to the study.

Seventy-five percent of subjects reported "overall improvement" in their ASD symptoms, specifically in the domains of hyperactivity, sleep, self-injury, and anxiety. The most frequently reported adverse effects associated with treatment were somnolence and changes in appetite.

Investigators concluded: "Children with ASD commonly have comorbid symptoms such as aggression, hyperactivity and anxiety. There is an increase in the use of cannabidiol in children with ASD. Based on parents’ reports, our findings suggest that cannabidiol may be effective in improving ASD comorbid symptoms."

The findings are similar to those of other recent trials — including those here, here, and here — reporting that the use of CBD-dominant extracts reduces symptoms of ASD and is well-tolerated.

For more information, contact Paul Armentano, NORML Deputy Director, at: Full text of the study, "Oral cannabidiol use in children with Autism Spectrum Disorder to treat related symptoms and co-morbidities," appears in Frontiers in Pharmacology.