Gabapentinoids for the treatment of cannabis use disorder: A focus on human laboratory research

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


There is an established yet unmet need for cannabis use disorder (CUD) medications. Gabapentin and pregabalin, voltage-dependent calcium channel (VDCC) ligands, are being considered for this indication. VDCCs are modulated by cannabinoid (CB) ligands, and there are overlapping therapeutic effects between CB agonists and VDCC ligands. In nontreatment-seeking cannabis users, gabapentin shared interoceptive and subjective effects with THC, and an early pilot clinical trial in treatment-seeking patients found that gabapentin treatment decreased urinary THC metabolite levels, self-reported cannabis use, craving and depression, and improved performance on tests of executive function. However, a subsequent larger trial with gabapentin for CUD yielded negative results, and similarly, maintenance on the gabapentin analog pregabalin failed to impact cannabis intake or effects in nontreatment-seeking subjects in a human laboratory study. Together, these data do not support the use of gabapentinoids as stand-alone treatments for CUD.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCannabis Use, Neurobiology, Psychology, and Treatment
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9780323898621
StatePublished - Jan 1 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


  • Drug discrimination
  • Gabapentin
  • Interoceptive
  • Marijuana
  • Pharmacotherapy
  • Pregabalin
  • Self-administration
  • Subjective effects

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine
  • General Neuroscience


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