Rats and RP

A potentially controversial matter has arisen out of a recently published article by the National Institute of Health that has found that cannabinoids may assist the delay of retinitis pigmentosa and in particular retinal degeneration associated with the blinding eye disease.The study was started to investigate whether there was any therapeutic properties of the cannabis compounds as they have already been found to exert neuroprotection on various neuronal insults. In particular the study goal was to address their reaction on photoreceptor degeneration, the activity of the eye retina in the trangenic P23H rat ( the model for autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa) and the synaptic connectivity within the model.

They discovered on completion of the study that a synthetic cannaboid does help to preserve the life of rod and cone structures in the P23H rats proving they have the potential for use in delayed retinal degeneration for humans in RP patients.