UCSF Researchers Test Marijuana-Based Drug To Combat Child Epileptic Seizures

SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS)— Researchers at UCSF are on the cutting edge of testing a marijuana-based drug for the treatment of severe epilepsy in kids.

Last April, UCSF was the first research hospital to start giving Epidiolex to kids. Results were so encouraging that last month kids as young as a year old were getting the drug to stem the seizures that come from severe epilepsy.

Dr. Maria Roberta Cilio, PhD, who is the principal investigator for the multi-center study and director of research at the UCSF Pediatric Epilepsy Center, said better treatment for children with uncontrolled seizures is desperately needed.

Epidiolex doesn’t have THC in it, the substance in pot that makes you high. Instead, the drug included the non-psychoactive compound that offers medical benefits.

This study will look at whether children will get the same benefits as adults from medical marijuana. Anecdotal accounts from parents find cannabis can calm seizures so much that some are looking to relocate to places like Colorado where they can legally purchase it.

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