Safety and Tolerability of Namisol in the Elderly

Safety and Tolerability of Oral Namisol®, a Tablet Containing Delta-9-Tetrahydrocannabinol, in Elderly Subjects: A Randomized Controlled Trial


Lead Sponsor: Radboud University

Source Radboud University
Brief Summary

The results of phase I Namisol® study (Klumpers et al. Br J Clin Pharmacol, 2012), implicate that Namisol® may have a favorable PK and PD characteristics and is safe to use in people. However, the study included only young adults with a mean age of 21.4 years. In a previous THC study, subjects age has been associated with treatment response and tolerance of adverse reactions. This association was not supported by Lane et al. and Volicer et al. There is concern about the safety and tolerability of THC in the elderly population. This is because, elderly persons in general have higher risk of adverse drug reactions due to a combination of physiological factors such as decreasing in lean body mass, the reduction of renal and hepatic clearance, and medical comorbidity which can lead to polypharmacy and drug-drug interactions. Therefore, data from the phase I trial cannot be translated directly to an elderly (and likely more vulnerable) population. This makes it important to evaluate the safety and tolerability profiles of different Namisol® doses in the elderly. In our study in progress "Delta-THC in Behavioral Disturbances in Dementia", the Namisol® doses of 0,75 mg and 1,5 mg are, until now, well tolerated by elderly subjects. These doses are, however, very low in comparison with the doses used in phase I study with young adults (5 mg, 6,5 mg and 8 mg). The current study on the safety and tolerability of relatively high doses of Namisol® will help us in the future to provide broad advice on the therapeutic index and safety profile of Namisol® in the elderly population.

Detailed Description

Subjects will visit the site 5 times. The first visit, is a 2 hour screening visit for eligibility in which volunteers after signing informed consent will have a medical history, physical examination, ECG, hematological and biochemical blood tests, Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE), Geriatric Depression scale (GDS-30) and body sway test. Eligible subjects will be randomly allocated to receive three doses Namisol® (3 mg or 5 mg or 6,5 mg) and placebo in double-blind crossover design (visit 1 to 4). The wash-out period between visits will be at least 2 weeks to a maximum of 4 weeks. Each visit will be preceded by baseline assessment measures. The safety and tolerability profiles of Namisol® will be evaluated on each intervention visit by using a standardized THC adverse effects checklist and self-reporting, vital signs, 12-lead ECG, body sway, Visual Analogue Scales (subtest feeling high), and Test for Attentional Performance (TAP, subtest alertness) and a follow up phone call the following day. Four blood samples will be collected on each visit to determine the relationship between the pharmacodynamic effects (VAS-feeling high, TAP-alertness and body sway) and the plasma concentrations of THC and its active metabolites 11-OH-THC and THC-COOH. In addition, a blood sample will be only collected on the first intervention day for genotyping of cytochrome P450 enzymes CYP2C9 CYP2C19 and CYP3A4.

Overall Status Completed
Start Date 2012-08-01
Completion Date 2012-12-01
Primary Completion Date 2012-12-01
Phase Phase 1
Study Type Interventional
Primary Outcome
Measure Time Frame
THC adverse effects checklist and self-reporting by the subjects Pre dose, 0h30m, 1h30m and at 2h30m post ingestion
Secondary Outcome
Measure Time Frame
Body Sway Test (SwayStar™) Pre dose, 0h40m, 0h55m and at 2 hour post ingestion
Visual analogue scales, subtest "feeling high" Pre dose, 0h40m, 0h55m and at 2 hour post ingestion
Test for Attentional Performance (TAP), subtest alertness Pre dose, 0h40m, 0h55m and at 2 hour post ingestion
Plasma concentrations of THC and its active metabolites 11-OH-THC and THC-COOH Pre dose, 0h40m, 0h55m and at 2 hour post ingestion
Enrollment 12

Intervention Type: Drug

Intervention Name: delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol

Description: During the intervention phases, subjects will be randomly allocated to receive 1 of 3 doses Namisol®: 3 mg, 5 mg, 6,5 mg (or placebo) The washout period between the intervention periods will be at least 2 weeks.

Arm Group Label: delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol

Intervention Type: Drug

Intervention Name: Placebo

Description: On each intervention day the subjects will receive the same amount of drugs in order to insure the blinding of the study

Arm Group Label: Placebo

Other Name: The control product is placebo



Inclusion Criteria: - Subject is a healthy old person as established by medical history, physical examination, electrocardiography, results of hematological and biochemical blood tests on screening. - Age 65 years - Body mass index between 18.0 and 30 kg m-2 - Subject is able and willing to sign the Informed Consent Form prior to screening evaluations Exclusion Criteria: - Regular cannabis user, defined as: smoking one or more joints per week - Documented history of sensitivity/idiosyncrasy to cannabis - Relevant history or presence of severe pulmonary disorders [e.g. COPD GOLD III or IV], serious cardiovascular disorders [e.g. myocardial infarction < 6 months ago; atrial fibrillation; heart failure NYHA III or IV; severe heart valve disease, orthostatic hypotension defined as systolic drop of 20 mm Hg Safety and Tolerability of Namisol in the Elderly Page 8 Version 2, 10 07 2012 or diastolic drop of 10 mm Hg], seizures, migraine, psychiatric disorders [e.g. depression (based on documented history or GDS-30 on screening ≥ 10); mania; psychosis; dementia], cognitive impairment [based on documented history or MMSE on screening < 28, significant renal (GFR < 30 ml/min) or hepatic disorders [e.g. cancer, cirrhosis. ALT or AST ≥ twice the upper limit of normal], diabetes mellitus, coagulation disorders - Inability to understand the nature and extent of the trial and the procedures required - Current alcohol abuse or use of more than 2 alcoholic consumptions daily - History of, or current drug abuse - Using drugs that are inhibitors of CYP2C9, CYP2C19 and CYP3A4 (see appendix 13.3) - Participation in a drug trial within 60 days prior to the first intervention day - Donation of blood within 60 days prior to the first intervention day - Known lactose intolerance - Using more than six units of (methyl)xanthine products per day (e.g. coffee, tea, cola, chocolate) - Smoking more than ten cigarettes per day - High fall-risk (based on body sway test)



Minimum Age:

65 Years

Maximum Age:


Healthy Volunteers:

Accepts Healthy Volunteers

Overall Official
Last Name Role Affiliation
Marcel Olde Rikkert, prof. dr. Principal Investigator Radboud University Medical Center Nijmegen
Facility: Radboud University Medical Centre, department of Geriatrics
Location Countries


Verification Date


Responsible Party

Type: Sponsor

Has Expanded Access No
Number Of Arms 2
Arm Group

Label: delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol

Type: Active Comparator

Description: Subjects will be randomized to receive 3 doses Namisol® (3 mg, 5 mg, 6,5 mg)

Label: Placebo

Type: Placebo Comparator

Description: The control product is placebo, consisting of a tablet with similar appearance and taste of the test product.

Acronym THC
Study Design Info

Allocation: Randomized

Intervention Model: Crossover Assignment

Primary Purpose: Treatment

Masking: Quadruple (Participant, Care Provider, Investigator, Outcomes Assessor)

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