Here are the big CBD news stories from this week:
- The MLB and the MLB Players Association have agreed to remove marijuana from the banned substances list.
- A new study suggests that Epidiolex may help reduce seizures from another rare disease.
Major League Baseball Removes Marijuana from Banned Substances
On Thursday, Major League Baseball and the Major League Baseball Players’ Association agreed to remove marijuana from the drugs of abuse list.
Marijuana will now be treated the same as alcohol.
“Going forward, marijuana-related conduct will be treated the same as alcohol-related conduct under the Parties’ Joint Treatment Program for Alcohol-Related and Off-Field Violent Conduct, which provides for mandatory evaluation, voluntary treatment and the possibility of discipline by a Player’s Club or the Commissioner’s Office in response to certain conduct involving Natural Cannabinoids,” MLB said in a press release.
Players will be tested for the presence of opioids, fentanyl, cocaine, and synthetic THC.
MLB started testing for opioids in light of the US opioid crisis, which struck the league after Angels pitcher Tyler Skaggs passed away mid-season due to a mixture of alcohol and opioids in his body.
Those who test positive for these compounds will be referred to treatment, but players will not be punished unless they refuse treatment.
The MLB press release also explicitly mentioned that CBD would be removed from the list of drugs of abuse.
The change to the marijuana policy comes after several states have legalized marijuana at various levels in recent years.
“It was a part of a larger conversation that was reflective of the attitudes changing in many parts of the country,” said Tony Clark, the union head.
These changes are effective at the start of 2020 Spring Training.
Study Suggests Epidiolex May Reduce Another Form of Seizure
A new preliminary study has found evidence that Epidiolex, the first CBD-based medication approved by the Food and Drug Administration, may effectively treat another form of seizures caused by a rare genetic disorder.
The study, led by the director of pediatric epilepsy at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston Dr. Elizabeth Thiele, gave Epidiolex or placebo to 224 patients with tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC).
TSC causes benign tumors to form throughout the body and, almost always, seizures.
Half of the patients were below the age of 11.
Researchers gave Epidiolex to half of the patients, in doses of 25mg or 50mg, while the rest received a placebo.
Patients also maintained their current anti-seizure medication.
After 16 weeks, those taking either dose of Epidiolex saw an average reduction in seizure frequency of almost 50 percent versus 27 percent in the placebo group.
Those taking the higher dose of Epidiolex were more likely to see a reduction of at least 50 percent.
While the results are encouraging, Dr. Thiele tempered the excitement.
“It’s not a magic bullet,” said Thiele. “It doesn’t help everyone, as we saw in this study.”
Dr. Thiele will present the findings to the American Epilepsy Society in Baltimore this weekend, after which it will be peer-reviewed.
Currently, Epidiolex is approved for treating Lennox-Gastaut syndrome and Dravet syndrome.