'Compounds in marijuana may help treat autism, two major studies concluded.
A study released earlier this year by researchers at Stanford University found that autism may be caused in large part by a mutation in a gene which blocks the action of molecules responsible for signaling in the brain.
These signaling molecules, called endocannabinoids, occur naturally in the human brain. They have a similar chemical structure to the active cannabinoids in marijuana and affect the same receptors in the brain. While it is still unclear how the disruption in endocannabinoid signaling affects the actual symptoms of autism, the research does offer some promise for the prospects of using medical marijuana to treat the condition.'