The potential for medicinal cannabis to help manage challenging behaviour in people with intellectual disability: A perspective review

Around 2% of the population have intellectual disabilities. Over one-third people with intellectual disabilities (PwID) present with ‘challenging behaviour’, which nosologically and diagnostically is an abstract concept. Challenging behaviour is influenced by a range of bio-psycho-social factors in a population, which is unable to suitably comprehend and/or communicate concerns. This predisposes to poor health and social outcomes. There is no evidence-based treatments for managing challenging behaviour. Cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) are being trialled for a range of disorders, which are over-represented in PwID and provoke challenging behaviours, such as severe epilepsy, spasticity, post-traumatic stress disorder, social phobia, pain, etc.

FAAH inhibition ameliorates breast cancer in a murine model

Breast cancer is the leading cancer among females worldwide. Disease outcome depends on the hormonal status of the cancer and whether or not it is metastatic, but there is a need for more efficacious therapeutic strategies where first line treatment fails. In this study, Fatty Acid Amide Hydrolase (FAAH) inhibition and endocannabinoids were examined as therapeutic alternatives. FAAH is an integral membrane enzyme that hydrolyzes endocannabinoids, rendering them inactive, and FAAH inhibition is predicted to increase cancer cell death. To test this, breast cancer cells were probed for FAAH expression using Western blot analysis, treated with FAAH inhibitors, exogenous endocannabinoids, and combinations of the two treatments, and assessed for viability.