Yasmina Kattou, edited by Alexandre Dalifard / Photo credit: HANNES P ALBERT / DPA / DPA PICTURE-ALLIANCE VIA AFP
To fight against cannabis addiction, a treatment, developed in the United States, would attenuate the effects of this drug while reducing the desire to consume it. In the USA, trials are in the process of determining the doses that could be effective in 300 patients.
Soon a treatment for cannabis addiction? The excitement arose after the publication of the results of a phase 2 clinical trial evaluating its effectiveness in patients with cannabis use disorder in Nature Medicine. Since today there is no remedy, no substitute (like nicotine when quitting smoking). Not only would the treatment lessen the effects of cannabis, but it would also reduce the desire to consume. In the USA, trials are in the process of determining the doses that could be effective in 300 patients. Concretely, how does this treatment work?
Prevent the absorption of THC
AEF 01 17 is the very first treatment that reduces the action of a receptor responsible for cannabis addiction in the brain – without blocking its functioning. “This treatment, what is specific about it, is that it will inhibit the CB1 receptor. It will prevent the absorption of THC, but it will not completely block it because these receptors serve a lot of things. in the body in terms of mood and memory. So you don’t have to completely block them”, explains Ketty Deleris, tobacco specialist specializing in addictions.
The euphoric effect of the drug is then limited. Smokers therefore feel less need to consume it. “What is also innovative is that we do not have all the effects that we usually have in weaning cannabis where we can have anxiety, sleep disorders”, underlines the specialist. Thanks to this treatment, doctors could thus avoid the prescription of anxiolytics or sleeping pills to treat the consequences of stopping cannabis.