Utah foundation donates $4.7 million for university study of CBD’s effects on autism

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A Utah foundation has donated a record $4.7 million to a California university to explore whether CBD can be used to treat severe autism in children.

The study, backed by a mainstream philanthropic foundation, could provide doctors with additional scientific evidence that might encourage them to recommend medical marijuana – a development that could boost sales.

The $4.7 million gift, from the Ray and Tye Noorda Foundation in Lindon, Utah, is the biggest private donation for medical cannabis research in the United States, The San Diego Union-Tribune reported.

The study will be done at the Center for Medical Cannabis Research at the University of California, San Diego, where scientists will focus on severe autism spectrum disorder, or ASD, which affects about one in 68 children, especially boys.

The study will look at whether CBD improves brain connectivity or alters neurotransmitters and biomarkers of neuro-inflammation, both associated with autism, according to the Union-Tribune.

The president of the Autism Society of America, Scott Badesch, told the newspaper that there are parents who “swear that this is effective – but it needs to undergo scientific research.”