Cannabis Research

At Bedrocan we consider scientific cannabis research vital to progress medicinal cannabis to approved medicine status. To complement our cannabis plant and analytical research, we support clinical trials and offer our resources and experience to medicinal cannabis research projects worldwide. Below is a table of published research projects using Bedrocan cannabis products.

Psychopharmacological studies in healthy participants

undertaken with Bedrocan products

Topic Results Author Year
Cannabis and oxycodone Although it was hypothesized that respiratory depression caused by cannabis would be amplified when cannabis and oxycodone were combined, cannabis had no effect on ventilatory control after placebo or oxycodone pretreatment. Van Dam et al. 2023
Adolescents vs adults Compared with placebo, cannabis increased ‘feel drug effect’, impaired  verbal episodic memory ( ability of describing  life events and personal experiences), and increased hallucinogenic effects. Adolescents did not differ from adults in their responses to cannabis and CBD did not balance the acute effects of THC. Lawn et al. 2023
Reward anticipation Compared with placebo, THC reduced anticipation activity in the bilateral ventral striatum and right insula, part of the reward network in the brain. THC+CBD reduced activity compared with placebo in the right ventral striatum and the right insula. There were no differences between THC and THC+CBD conditions. Skumlien et al. 2023
Attentional bias and explicit liking Cannabis induced attentional bias toward cannabis in users with no previous history of substance use disorder. CBD did not attenuate this effect. However, cannabis intoxication did not increase ratings of explicit liking of cannabis. Oliver et al. 2023
Functional connectivity Cannabis strongly disrupted functional connectivity in the networks of the brain responsible for motor skills and decision-making process. Cannabis with THC only reduced functional connectivity in the brain’s limbic striatum network, which was not present in the THC+CBD condition. Wall et al. 2022
Anxiety THC and THC+CBD increased temporary feelings of anxiety (state-anxiety). State-anxiety after THC+CBD was lower than after THC. THC-induced anxiety was independent of anxiety at baseline. When baseline anxiety was low, CBD completely counteracted THC-induced anxiety.However, when baseline anxiety was high, CBD did not counteract THC-induced anxiety. Hutten et al. 2022
Pharmacokinetics of THC and CBD THC elevated anandamide plasma levels. This effect was not affected by the coadministration of CBD. Englund et al. 2022
CBD impact on THC effects No evidence has been found that CBD reduces the acute adverse effects of THC on cognition and mental health. Also, there was no evidence that it changed the subjective or pleasurable effects of THC. Englund et al. 2022
Functional brain connectomes Networks in the brain can distinguish between occasional and chronic cannabis users and identify acute cannabis intoxication. Ramaekers et al. 2022
Sex differences There were no systematic sex differences in the acute effects of vaporized cannabis. It is still possible that sex differences will appear with higher THC doses or with other administration methods. Arkell et al. 2022
Schizotypal personality traits Following THC, an increased frequency of cannabis use was associated with reduced intensity of subjective and psychosis-like effects. More frequent cannabis use was associated with higher levels of psychosis-like effects when participants were not intoxicated. However, schizotypal personality traits did not moderate the psychosis-like effects of THC. Freeman et al. 2021
Chronic vs occasional users In occasional users, cannabis induced reductions in functional connectivity between reward-related areas in the brain.Reduced concentrations of the neurotransmitter glutamate in the area of the brain responsible for motor tasks were also identified. These effects were related to increased ‘high feeling’ and decreased sustained attention task performance. Such changes were absent in chronic users. Mason et al. 2021
Psychotic symptoms THC increases psychotic-like symptoms and may increase the incidence of speech illusion. CBD did not influence psychotic-like effects of cannabis. Mokrysz et al. 2020
Driving performance Lane weaving, swerving, and overcorrecting with Bedrocan and Bediol was significantly greater at 40 to 100 minutes but not 240 to 300 minutes after consumption; there were no significant differences between Bedrolite and placebo. Arkell et al. 2020
False memory Cannabis consistently increases susceptibility to false memories. The results have implications for police, legal professionals, and policymakers with regard to the treatment of cannabis-intoxicated witnesses and suspects and the validity of their statements. Kloft et al. 2020
Brain function THC disrupts the brain region involved in the subjective experience of THC intoxication. CBD restores the disruption caused by THC, which may explain the potential of CBD to treat disorders such as psychosis and addiction. Wall et al. 2019
Neurotransmitter function THC elicits subjective and cognitive alterations via increased striatal dopaminergic activity and loss of corticostriatal connectivity, which is associated with an increase in striatal glutamate. Mason et al. 2019
Traffic safety The point in time after cannabis consumption seems to play an important role concerning driving safety: significantly more driving faults were committed directly after consumption. Three hours after consumption, no significant increase of driving faults was seen. Tank et al. 2019
Brain’s reward circuit Public advertising of alcohol or cannabis use elicits striatal activation in the brain’s reward circuit. Reduction of marketing would reduce brain exposure to reward cues that motivate substance use. de Sousa et al. 2017
Taste perception Administration of cannabis preparations at the low doses tested does not affect sweet taste intensity perception and liking, nor does it influence food preferences in humans. De Bruijn et al. 2017
Adolescents vs adults Adolescents felt less ‘stoned’ and reported fewer psychotomimetic symptoms than adults. Adults, but not adolescents, were more anxious and less alert during the cannabis use session. Mokrysz et al. 2016
Decision-making and reward learning Cannabis acutely induced a transient amotivational state and CBD influenced the effects of THC on expected value. Lawn et al. 2016
Cannabis and alcohol Alcohol facilitated feelings of aggression whereas cannabis diminished aggressive feelings in heavy alcohol and regular cannabis users. De Sousa et al. 2016
Cannabis and cocaine Interference of cannabis and cocaine with cognitive impulse control and functional corticostriatal connectivity depends on a specific genotype. Ramaekers et al. 2016
Neurocognitive function Executive function, impulse control, attention, psychomotor function and subjective intoxication were significantly worse after cannabis administration relative to placebo. Ramaekers et al. 2016
Cannabis and cocaine Cannabis and cocaine demonstrated opposing effects on the early and late phases of error monitoring. Spronk et al. 2016
Human cognition The research aimed at exploring how cannabis affects creative thinking, awareness of errors, and the neurotransmitter dopamine among regular cannabis users. It was discovered that cannabis does not improve creativity and that it can decrease error awareness and impair dopaminergic functioning. Kowal et al. 2016
Cannabis and cocaine Cannabis yielded slower reaction times, impaired accuracy and a reduction in the prefrontal NoGo-P3 amplitude. Cocaine produced opposing results. Cannabis also decreased parietally P3 amplitude. Neither drugs affected the N2 component, suggesting that pre-motor response inhibitory processes remain unaffected. Spronk et al. 2015
Verbal memory Acetylcholine plays an important role in cannabis-induced memory impairment, whereas similar results for glutamate were not observed. Theunissen et al. 2015
Psychedelic symptoms Cannabis increased dissociation and psychedelic state, as well as fatigue, confusion, depression and anxiety, and decreased arousal, positive mood, vigor, friendliness, and elation. A broad association between trait impulsivity and psychedelic subjective drug experience appears to be absent. Van Wel et al. 2015
Reversal learning Acute effects of cocaine and cannabis on reversal learning as a function of COMTand DRD2 genotype. Spronk et al. 2015
Subjective effects Cannabis containing high percentages of THC had a strong effect on the rating of subjective effects. Hunault et al. 2014
Driving skills Cannabis smoking, even at low THC blood concentrations, decreases psychomotor skills and alters the activity of the brain networks involved in cognition. Battistella et al. 2013
Cannabinoid concentrations THC, and also THC-A, shows a sharp, high concentration peak just after smoking, with a rapid decrease in these levels within 3 hours. Fabritius et al. 2013
Psychomotor function Single doses of cannabis impaired psychomotor function and increased response errors during impulsivity tasks in heavy cannabis users. Van Wel et al. 2013
Heavy vs occasional users Heavy cannabis users develop tolerance to some of the impairing behavioral effects of cannabis. Theunissen et al. 2012
THC and alcohol  Heavy cannabis users develop tolerance to the impairing effects of THC on neurocognitive task performance. Yet, heavy cannabis users did not develop cross-tolerance to the impairing effects of alcohol, and the presence of the latter even selectively potentiated THC effects on measures of divided attention. Ramaekers et al. 2011
Doping by athletes In addition to THC-COOH, the pharmacologically active THC and THC-OH should be used as target analytes for doping urine analysis. In the case of light cannabis use, this may allow the estimation of more recent consumption, probably influencing performance during competitions. Brenneisen et al. 2010
Heavy vs occasional users THC significantly impaired performance of occasional cannabis users on critical tracking, divided attention and the stop signal task. THC did not affect the performance of heavy cannabis users except in the stop signal task, i.e. stop reaction time increased, particularly at high THC concentrations. Ramaekers et al. 2009
Cognitive and psychomotor effects Both response times on cognitive tasks and motor control worsened linearly with increasing THC dose. The number of errors in the short-term memory and sustained attention tasks as well as heart rate and ratings of feeling high linearly increased with increasing THC dose.  Hunault et al.  2009
Pharmacokinetics of THC The linear association between THC dose and THC serum concentration also applies for high THC doses. Hunault et al. 2008
Pharmacokinetics of THC Smoking cannabis with higher THC contents was associated with a dose-related increase of the serum concentrations of THC, physical effects, and psychomotor effects. Mensinga et al. 2006
Motor control High potency marijuana consistently impaired executive function and motor control. Ramaekers et al. 2006
Driving skills Serum THC concentrations between 2 and 5 ng/ml establish the lower and upper range of a THC limit for impairment. Ramaekers et al. 2006

Clinical studies in patients

undertaken with Bedrocan products

Topic Results Author Year
Alzheimer’s disease Treatment with Bedrocan resulted in a reduction in agitation, apathy, irritability, sleep disturbances, and eating disturbances. Physical and verbal aggression was lower in all patients. In addition, there was a decrease in cognitive impairment in 45% of the patients. Palmieri and Vadalà 2023
Post-traumatic stress disorder Of the 18 patients 15 continued using the Bediol, primarily before bedtime to aid sleep. They reported significant improvements, including increased peace of mind and reduced irritability. De Wit and Vermetten 2023
Chronic pain A significant reduction in opioid use after a long-term cannabis extract therapy was observed. Conversely, this effect was not visible for anticonvulsant, antidepressant, and benzodiazepine medications. Nunnari et al. 2022
SyqeAir Treatment with the Syqe Inhaler resulted in general long-term pain reduction and quality of life improvement. In addition, the adverse effects profile is suggested to be better than with standard vaporizer devices. Aviram et al. 2022
Epilepsy Seizure frequency decreased by 86% with no significant adverse events. The study supports the effectiveness of whole-plant medical cannabis extracts in severe childhood-onset epilepsies. Zafar et al. 2021
Chronic migraine Cannabinoid extracts may have an impact on pain intensity in patients with chronic migraine, but the magnitude of the effect seems limited. Baraldi et al. 2021
Fibromyalgia chronic pain Cannabis may represent an alternative treatment for patients with fibromyalgia who are unresponsive to conventional therapy. However, its application may be limited by the incidence of nonserious adverse events. Mazza 2021
Epilepsy Of the ten patients enrolled in the study there was an 97% mean reduction in monthly seizure frequency post initiation of CBMPs (cannabis based medicinal products). Zafar et al. 2020
SyqeAir The Syqe inhaler delivered precise and low THC doses to produce a dose-dependent analgesic effect in patients with neuropathic pain/complex-regional pain syndrome. Almog et al. 2020
SyqeAir Pain intensity, 30–60 minutes following inhalations, was reported to be significantly lower than pre-inhalation. The use of the Syqe inhaler during hospitalisation yielded high levels of patients and staff satisfaction with no complications. Vulfons et al. 2020
Fibromyalgia Adjunctive cannabis therapy offers a possible clinical advantage in fibromyalgia patients, especially in those with sleep dysfunctions. The clinical improvement inversely correlated with patient BMI. Giorgi et al. 2020
Drug-resistant epilepsy All patients reported a reduction in seizure frequency and severity, and some reported improved mood, sleep quality, and general well-being without major side effects. Only one patient experienced one adverse event of mild intensity. Pane et al. 2020
Fibromyalgia Cannabis varieties containing THC caused a significant increase in pressure pain threshold relative to placebo. CBD inhalation increased THC plasma concentrations but diminished THC-induced analgesic effects, indicative of synergistic pharmacokinetic, but antagonistic pharmacodynamic interactions of THC and CBD. Van de Donk et al. 2019
Chronic diseases Cannabis oil extract may be therapeutically effective and safe for the symptomatic treatment of some chronic diseases – in particular pain. Palmieri et al. 2019
Chronic pain Cannabis therapy, as an addition to traditional analgesic therapy, can be an efficacious tool to make more effective the management of chronic pain and its consequences on the functional and psychological dimensions. Poli et al. 2018
Cannabis use data Cannabis use among Dutch patients was analyzed based on prescription data obtained from the Dutch Foundation for Pharmaceutical Statistics. The results showed that an increasing number of Dutch patients are using medicinal cannabis on prescription, while the average daily consumption has remained stable over many years. This suggests the absence of tolerance or cannabis abuse in this population. De Hoop et al. 2018
Non-responders to Nabiximols Bedrocan was well tolerated and patients reported no psychoactive effects. Alternative treatment with Bedrocan accounts for a promising response rate in Nabiximols (Sativex) non-responders. Sacca et al. 2016
Syqe inhaler This trial suggests the potential use of the Syqe Inhaler device as a smokeless delivery system of medicinal cannabis, producing a THC pharmacokinetic profile with low inter-individual variation, and achieving pharmaceutical standards for inhaled drugs. Eisenberg et al. 2014
Pharmacokinetics of irinotecan and docetaxel Coadministration of medicinal cannabis, as herbal tea, in cancer patients treated with irinotecan or docetaxel does not significantly influence the plasma pharmacokinetics of these drugs. Engels et al. & De Jong et al. 2007

Case studies in patients

undertaken with Bedrocan products

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cannabis flower monograph
Tjalling Erkelens about German cannabis policy