Excerpts from an Associated Press report about discovering a new "potent antioxidant."
Possible Stroke Drug Is Tested
Monday, July 6, 1998; 1:24 p.m. EDT
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Federal scientists have begun testing in rats a chemical from marijuana that they say appears to protect brain cells during a stroke.
``This is a better candidate'' against stroke than other marijuana chemicals, said Aiden Hampson of the National Institute of Mental Health.
His study, published in this week's Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, found that in a test tube, cannabidiol proved to be a potent antioxidant that protected animal brain cells exposed to the toxic neurochemical that is produced during a stroke.
Until now, cannabidiol had been considered an inactive ingredient, Hampson said. It was studied as a possible drug for Huntington's disease a decade ago but failed to work. However, scientists who gave high doses to people at that time uncovered no serious side effects, he said.