Nabilone for Agitation Blinded Intervention Trial (NAB-IT)

Interventional Study

Get in touch about this study

What is the study about?

This study will look at nabilone as a treatment for agitation in persons with Alzheimer’s disease (AD).  Nabilone is approved by Health Canada for managing severe nausea and vomiting in patients receiving chemotherapy. It is a medication based on one substance in cannabis (marijuana). An earlier study with a smaller group of participants found that nabilone improved agitation, behavioural symptoms, and caregiver distress. NAB-IT is a phase III trial that will include more participants.


Participants in this study will randomly be assigned to receive either nabilone or a placebo for 9 weeks. In addition to looking at agitation, the researchers will also look at whether participants will benefit in other ways, including overall behavioural symptoms, caregiver distress, thinking and memory, nutritional status, and pain. Participants will also be followed for 8 weeks following completion of the study treatment.


Eligibility–Who can participate?

Participants must:

  • Be 55 years of age or older
  • Have a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease
  • Have agitation
  • Have a caregiver to accompany them to study visits and participate in the study

Time requirement:

9 visits approximately every 2 weeks. Many of the study assessments can be completed remotely.


TDRA investigator

Dr. Krista Lanctôt


More information


Advances in Dementia Research Webinar- Listen to Dr. Krista L. Lanctôt (Principal Investigator) discuss the NAB-IT study in further detail:

TDRA Site:

Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH)

Address: 1001 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M6J 1H4

Ontario Shores Centre for Mental Health Sciences

Address: 700 Gordon St, Whitby, ON L1N 5S9

St. Michael’s Hospital

Address: 209 Victoria St, Toronto, ON M5B 1T8

Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre

Address: 2075 Bayview Ave, Toronto, ON M4N 3M5

Age Group:

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Target Population:

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The listing of a study on the Toronto Dementia Network (TDN) is for informational purposes only. The safety, efficacy or scientific validity of the studies listed here have not been evaluated by The Alzheimer Society of Toronto (AST) or the Toronto Dementia Research Alliance (TDRA). The TDRA is an academic coalition among the University of Toronto and four memory clinics across Toronto at Baycrest, the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, and the University Health Network. The information collected will be kept and guarded by TDRA. Choosing to participate in a study is an important personal decision. Before you participate in a study, you should make sure you understand the risks and potential benefits and discuss all options with your health care provider(s).