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Pharmacokinetics, Safety, and Clinical Efficacy of Cannabidiol Treatment in Osteoarthritic Dogs

Journal: Frontiers in Veterinary Science
Publication Year: 2018
Authors: Lauri-Jo Gamble, Jordyn M. Boesch, Christopher W. Frye, Wayne S. Schwark, Sabine Mann, Lisa Wolfe, Holly Brown, Erin S. Berthelsen, and Joseph J. Wakshlag

Abstract

Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most common chronic condition that dogs face. If diagnosed, it is important to focus on managing the symptoms versus find a cure. This study shows that cannabidiol (CBD) can help increase comfort and activity levels in dogs with OA.

Objectives: The objectives of this study were to determine basic oral pharmacokinetics, and assess safety and analgesic efficacy of a cannabidiol (CBD) based oil in dogs with osteoarthritis (OA).

Methods: Single-dose pharmacokinetics was performed using two different doses of CBD enriched (2 and 8 mg/kg) oil. Thereafter, a randomized placebo-controlled, veterinarian, and owner blinded, cross-over study was conducted. Dogs received each of two treatments: CBD oil (2 mg/kg) or placebo oil every 12 h. Each treatment lasted for 4 weeks with a 2-week washout period. Baseline veterinary assessment and owner questionnaires were completed before initiating each treatment and at weeks 2 and 4. Hematology, serum chemistry and physical examinations were performed at each visit. A mixed model analysis, analyzing the change from enrollment baseline for all other time points was utilized for all variables of interest, with a p ≤ 0.05 defined as significant.

Results: Pharmacokinetics revealed an elimination half-life of 4.2 h at both doses and no observable side effects. Clinically, canine brief pain inventory and Hudson activity scores showed a significant decrease in pain and increase in activity (p < 0.01) with CBD oil. Veterinary assessment showed decreased pain during CBD treatment (p < 0.02). No side effects were reported by owners, however, serum chemistry showed an increase in alkaline phosphatase during CBD treatment (p < 0.01).

Clinical significance: This pharmacokinetic and clinical study suggests that 2 mg/kg of CBD twice daily can help increase comfort and activity in dogs with OA.

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