The therapeutic potential of cannabidiol (CBD) in mouse models of Alzheimer's disease
The approved medications for Alzheimer's disease (AD) do not stop or prevent the disease from progressing and have limited efficacy, highlighting the need for new and more effective AD therapies. AD is characterized by the deregulation of two proteins, amyloid-β (Aβ) and tau, which is accompanied by extensive inflammation, oxidative stress, and degeneration of the brain. Cannabis sativa, marijuana, is a complex plant that is currently being investigated for its potential therapeutic benefits, particularly in neurodegenerative and inflammatory disorders such as AD. Cannabidiol (CBD) is a non-psychoactive constituent of this plant that has shown to reduce inflammation, oxidative stress as well as Aβ and tau-related effects in vitro. The research team propose to investigate the preventative effect of CBD in AD transgenic mouse models relevant to Aβ and tau. They will treat the mice for 6 months before observing their cognitive performance in various tests, which will be followed by examining the brain tissue for AD-relevant pathologies, including Aβ, tau, oxidative and inflammatory markers. It is hypothesised that CBD will prevent the development of cognitive deficits and AD-relevant pathologies in these mice thereby providing preclinical data for the therapeutic potential of CBD as a new AD treatment.
Ms Georgia Watt is a PhD candidate with the School of Medicine at Western Sydney University.