UC study: Medical pot can help curb some seizures

CINCINNATI – A clinical trial to test whether medical marijuana can curb severe epileptic seizures has delivered “impressive” results, according to the study’s lead researcher at the University of Cincinnati.

A trial of the drug Epidiolex – led by Dr. Michael Privitera of the Epilepsy Center at the UC Neuroscience Institute in Corryville – is now paving the way for the first U.S. approval of a marijuana-based prescription drug.

The research, Privitera says, is critical to better understanding the potential benefits of medicines derived from marijuana, especially as  more states, like Ohio, pass laws legalizing the drug.

“We don’t need seizure medicines that get people high,” Privitera said. “What we’re trying to do is make people better.”

Epidiolex, manufactured by UK-based GW Pharmaceuticals, is made from marijuana plants by extracting cannabidiol, or CBD. It’s administered to patients in a oil-base form. Unlike tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), cannabidiol doesn’t make people feel high.

The study included 255 patients

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