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Prog Neuropsychopharmacol Biol Psychiatry. 2019 Mar 8;89:90-96. doi: 10.1016/j.pnpbp.2018.08.030. Epub 2018 Aug 29.

Cannabidiol as a suggested candidate for treatment of autism spectrum disorder.

Author information

1
Felsenstein Medical Research Center, Tel Aviv University, Petah - Tikvah, Israel; Sackler Faculty of Medicine, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv, Israel.
2
Child and Adolescent Outpatient Clinic, Geha Mental Health Center, Petah -Tikvah, Israel; Sackler Faculty of Medicine, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv, Israel.
3
Felsenstein Medical Research Center, Tel Aviv University, Petah - Tikvah, Israel; Sackler Faculty of Medicine, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv, Israel; Sagol School of Neuroscience, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv, Israel.
4
Felsenstein Medical Research Center, Tel Aviv University, Petah - Tikvah, Israel; Sackler Faculty of Medicine, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv, Israel; Research Unit, Geha Mental Health Center, Petah - Tikva, Israel. Electronic address: aweizman@clalit.org.il.

Abstract

Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is characterized by persistent deficits in social communication, restricted and repetitive patterns of behavior, interests, or activities and often intellectual disabilities. ASD has a number of prevalent co-morbidities, such as sleep disorders, attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder and epilepsy. No effective treatment for the core symptoms of ASD is currently available. There is increasing interest in cannabinoids, especially cannabidiol (CBD), as monotherapy or add-on treatment for the core symptoms and co-morbidities of ASD. In this review we summarize the available pre-clinical and clinical data regarding the safety and effectiveness of medical cannabis, including CBD, in young ASD patients. Cannabidiol seems to be a candidate for the treatment of ASD. At present, however, there are no convincing pre-clinical or clinical data showing efficacy and safety of cannabinoid treatment in ASD patients.

KEYWORDS:

Autism spectrum disorder; CBD; Medical cannabis

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