Archive for the ‘Neural’ Category

Neural activity that retracts excessive early innervation in a certain pathway helps make late neural connections in a different pathway, research has found. This may provide a self-organizing mechanism of neural connections, and additionally, early excessive innervation may serve as a guide for making late neural connections.

Source: Scrapping excessive neural connection helps build new connections — ScienceDaily

This study suggests that cannabis may interfere with the restoration of neural connections.  The title is misleading in that the title is positive, but the details point out that cannabis may prevent this sort of useful connectivity, possibly refuting earlier studies that suggest that cannabis aids neural connections.  Given such conflicts, the jury is still out.

AuntieBS

New research shows a dramatic drop in painkiller prescriptions after medical marijuana laws are passed.

Source: One striking chart shows why pharma companies are fighting legal marijuana – The Washington Post

Scientists have found preliminary evidence that tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and other compounds found in marijuana can promote the cellular removal of amyloid beta, a toxic protein associated with Alzheimer’s disease.

Source: Cannabinoids remove plaque-forming Alzheimer’s proteins from brain cells — ScienceDaily

A new study finds THC reduces amyloid beta proteins in human neurons.

Source: Cannabinoids May Reduce Alzheimer’s Proteins From Brain Cells – Neuroscience News

This is a collection of cannabis articles over the past year.  BEWARE, there is BULLSHIT here.  There are many cases, as I always warn about, where correlation is confused with causality.  For example, an article talks about marijuana use and sexual abuse as a child makes it pretty clear that childhood trauma can influence the need for escapes, but others “studies” will imply reverse causality:  That marijuana use makes you more likely to be molested.  OK, that’s a poor example, but many articles talk about IQ decline *from* marijuana use, then it is equally or more likely that the lower IQ causes more stress (in school) and thereby makes the struggling student more likely to seek escapes– that the lower IQ is causal to the marijuana use, not vice versa.

So, as you read these, note the correlations and whether or not causality is shown, before you make decisions.  There is a LOT of bullshit out there intended to confuse and cause FUD– Fear, Uncertainty, Doubt.  If an article says marijuana causes X, ask yourselves if it might be vice versa– if X may cause more marijuana use.

AuntieBS

Starting age of marijuana use may have long-term effects on brain development

Posted: 10 Feb 2016 10:53 AM PST

The age at which an adolescent begins using marijuana may affect typical brain development, according to researchers. Scientists describe how marijuana use, and the age at which use is initiated, may adversely alter brain structures that underlie higher order thinking.
Using medical marijuana to stop seizures in kids

Posted: 08 Feb 2016 11:06 AM PST

Desperate for relief, parents are taking unusual steps to help children plagued with seizures. The relief, however, comes in a most unlikely form: marijuana.
Long-term marijuana use associated with worse verbal memory in middle age

Posted: 01 Feb 2016 09:30 AM PST

Marijuana use over time was associated with remembering fewer words from a list but it did not appear to affect other areas of cognitive function in a study of men and women followed up over 25 years, according to a new article.
Marijuana survey finds medical users more likely to consume edibles and vaporize

Posted: 28 Jan 2016 10:30 AM PST

A new study provides some of the first evidence about patterns of marijuana use in states that have legalized medical marijuana. It finds that medical marijuana users are more likely to vaporize or consume edible forms of the drug than recreational users. Researchers also found that 41 percent of people reported having used marijuana recreationally at least once, while only about 7 percent reported using marijuana for medical purposes.
Drug curbs marijuana use, but with tough side effects

Posted: 14 Jan 2016 08:35 AM PST

Doctors have no approved medicine to help treat marijuana dependence and abuse, but in small new clinical trial, topiramate reduced the amount of cannabis heavy smokers used when they lit up. The results also show, however, that many volunteers couldn’t tolerate the drug’s side effects.
No easy answers in study of legal marijuana’s impact on alcohol use

Posted: 29 Dec 2015 05:41 PM PST

Does legalization of marijuana lead pot users to drink more, or are they likely to substitute alcohol for weed? A new paper seeks to discover how changing marijuana laws affect the use of alcohol, the nation’s most popular drug.
Sensation-seeking, reward sensitivity and early cannabis use

Posted: 10 Dec 2015 03:16 PM PST

Sensation seeking, or the tendency to seek out exciting experiences, has been linked to addiction. Researchers have reported that sensation seeking is related to reward sensitivity in teens, and that a school-based intervention that targeted sensation seeking delays the onset of cannabis use, and slows the progression from light to heavy cannabis use in teens.
Cannabis increases the noise in your brain

Posted: 03 Dec 2015 05:22 AM PST

Several studies have demonstrated that the primary active constituent of cannabis, delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, induces transient psychosis-like effects in healthy subjects similar to those observed in schizophrenia. However, the mechanisms underlying these effects are not clear. A new study shows that this active ingredient increases random neural activity, termed neural noise, in the brains of healthy human subjects. The findings suggest that increased neural noise may play a role in the psychosis-like effects of cannabis.
White matter damage caused by ‘skunk-like’ cannabis, study shows

Posted: 27 Nov 2015 07:23 AM PST

Smoking high potency ‘skunk-like’ cannabis can damage a crucial part of the brain responsible for communication between the two brain hemispheres, according to a new study.
Marijuana dependence influenced by genes, childhood sexual abuse

Posted: 23 Nov 2015 05:59 PM PST

Genetic variation within the endocannabinoid system may explain why some survivors of childhood adversity go on to become dependent on marijuana, while others are able to use marijuana without problems, suggests new research.
Vision test gives insight into the effect of prenatal exposure to recreational drugs

Posted: 19 Nov 2015 01:10 PM PST

Children exposed to marijuana in the womb show a significant improvement in their ability to track moving objects at age four, according to new vision research. But researchers are warning that the results do not mean marijuana has a beneficial effect on fetal development.
Danish cannabis is stronger than ever

Posted: 19 Nov 2015 11:23 AM PST

The concentration of the euphoriant THC in cannabis has tripled in the space of 20 years in Denmark. The reason may be a systematic processing of the cannabis plants, some of which are being grown in skunk farms in Denmark. Cannabis of such high quality can lead to a greater risk of harm and adverse side effects. This is in particular a problem for the large group of young people who smoke it several times a month.
What leads to the local adoption and implementation of recreational marijuana policies?

Posted: 17 Nov 2015 06:12 AM PST

When states move to legalize marijuana, local governments are faced with enacting — or in some cases restricting — the policy change in their jurisdictions. Using Colorado as a case study, a new study finds that public opinion, tax revenues and existing medical marijuana policies affect local governments’ decisions to allow the sale of recreational marijuana.
Medical marijuana should be held to same standard as other drugs, pharmacist says

Posted: 10 Nov 2015 02:16 PM PST

Medical marijuana needs to be studied like any other drug. No one is opposed to the active ingredients in it, but we need to have some data. That is what we would expect from any other drug, an expert says.
Surprising finds about drug use

Posted: 05 Nov 2015 12:21 PM PST

Conducting an economic analysis of drug use is a particularly difficult endeavor, but for one researcher, it just meant taking a look at the history books.
Researchers study differences in ischemic stroke in marijuana users

Posted: 26 Oct 2015 02:25 PM PDT

Strokes in young adults who use marijuana are more likely to be caused by stenosis, narrowing of the arteries, in the skull than strokes in non-users, new research shows. Previous studies found an association between marijuana use and stroke, but the new study is the first to explore differences in stroke in marijuana users and non-users, an approach that can help identify possible mechanisms for stroke in users.
‘Love hormone’ helps produce ‘bliss molecules’ to boost pleasure of social interactions

Posted: 26 Oct 2015 02:18 PM PDT

The hormone oxytocin, which has been associated with interpersonal bonding, may enhance the pleasure of social interactions by stimulating production of marijuana-like neurotransmitters in the brain, according to a new study. The research provides the first link between oxytocin — dubbed the ‘love hormone’ — and anandamide, which has been called the ‘bliss molecule’ for its role in activating cannabinoid receptors in brain cells to heighten motivation and happiness.
More than 25 percent of women giving birth who test positive for marijuana also using other drugs

Posted: 23 Oct 2015 05:32 AM PDT

As an increasing number of states legalize marijuana for medical or recreational use, health officials expect consumption of tetrahydrocanabis during pregnancy to increase. A new study suggests a mother’s use of marijuana while pregnant could indicate other drug use as well.
Marijuana use more than doubles from 2001 to 2013; increase in use disorders too

Posted: 21 Oct 2015 08:49 AM PDT

The estimated prevalence of adults who used marijuana in the past year more than doubled in the United States between 2001 and 2013 to 9.5 percent, according to a new article. As is the case with alcohol, many individuals can use marijuana without becoming addicted. However, the clear risk for marijuana use disorders among users (approximately 30 percent) suggests that as the number of U.S. users grows, so will the numbers of those experiencing problems related to such use.
Heavy drinkers, drugs users underestimate their levels of consumption compared to others’

Posted: 19 Oct 2015 04:20 AM PDT

Heavy drinkers and users of illegal drugs downplay their relative levels of consumption, when comparing themselves to others, reveals research. The research shows that 68 per cent of respondents were drinking at hazardous or harmful levels, yet the vast majority (83 per cent) felt they were drinking at low or average levels.
Sex is more likely on days college students use marijuana or binge drink

Posted: 07 Oct 2015 11:48 AM PDT

Undergraduate college students were more likely to have sex on days they used marijuana or binged on alcohol than on days they didn’t, new research has found.
Multicenter study examines safety of medical cannabis in treatment of chronic pain

Posted: 29 Sep 2015 08:20 AM PDT

A Canadian research team has completed a national multicenter study looking at the safety of medical cannabis use among patients suffering from chronic pain. They found that patients with chronic pain who used cannabis daily for one year, when carefully monitored, did not have an increase in serious adverse events compared to pain patients who did not use cannabis.
Do American adolescents approve of marijuana?

Posted: 16 Sep 2015 08:30 AM PDT

Groundbreaking research suggests that adolescents have become less likely to approve of and use marijuana over the last decade when compared to young adults. This is coming during a time where a majority of Americans support the full legalization of marijuana, according to a 2013 poll. 
Teen marijuana use down despite greater availability

Posted: 15 Sep 2015 11:10 AM PDT

Marijuana use among American high school students is significantly lower today than it was 15 years ago, despite the legalization in many states of marijuana for medical purposes, a move toward decriminalization of the drug and the approval of its recreational use in a handful of places, new research suggests.
Researchers document self-reported use of new, uncommon synthetic drugs by teens, young adults

Posted: 15 Sep 2015 07:59 AM PDT

This is the first study reporting on use of a variety of new drugs in a nationally representative U.S. sample. Researchers are confident that use was severely underreported, as the subjects were not asked about most of these new drugs specifically. The researchers advocate for health surveys to ask about use of new drugs, in addition to traditional drugs such as marijuana and cocaine, in order to quickly pick up on potential drug epidemics.
Medicinal marijuana: Patients battle stigma and misunderstanding

Posted: 28 Aug 2015 08:30 AM PDT

New research examines the experiences of California residents who have been prescribed medical marijuana and the stigma they experience from public opinion.  The findings indicate that the stigma of using medical marijuana may contribute to the under-treatment of those who might benefit from medical marijuana. 
Cannabis use may influence cortical maturation in adolescent males

Posted: 26 Aug 2015 08:36 AM PDT

Male teens who experiment with cannabis before age 16, and have a high genetic risk for schizophrenia, show a different brain development trajectory than low risk peers who use cannabis.
Cannabis and the brain

Posted: 26 Aug 2015 08:36 AM PDT

Two new studies examine associations between cannabis use and the brain.
Nicotine changes marijuana’s effect on the brain

Posted: 18 Aug 2015 11:24 AM PDT

How scientists study the effects of marijuana on the brain is changing. Until recently marijuana research largely excluded tobacco users from its participant pool, but scientists have found reason to abandon this practice, uncovering significant differences in the brains of individuals who use both tobacco and marijuana and the brains of those who only use marijuana.
Places with more marijuana dispensaries have more marijuana-related hospitalizations

Posted: 10 Aug 2015 08:09 AM PDT

People who live in areas of California with a higher density of marijuana dispensaries experience a greater number of hospitalizations involving marijuana abuse and dependence, an analysis has discovered.
Teen marijuana use not linked to later depression, lung cancer, other health problems, study finds

Posted: 04 Aug 2015 06:37 AM PDT

Chronic marijuana use by teenage boys does not appear to be linked to later physical or mental health issues such as depression, psychotic symptoms or asthma, according to a new study. [NOTE: A clarification of the study was issued because of controversy surrounding the findings. The original article reported there was not a statistically significant difference among four groups of males who exhibited varying patterns of teenage marijuana use in relation to several physical and mental health issues later in life, including psychotic disorders.]
Teens with medical marijuana cards much likelier to say they’re addicted, but few teens have them

Posted: 23 Jul 2015 11:02 AM PDT

Teens using marijuana for medical reasons are 10 times more likely to say they are hooked on marijuana than youth who get marijuana illegally, a new study shows. The study is the first to report on a nationally representative sample of 4,394 high school seniors and their legal or illegal medical marijuana use as it relates to other drug use. In the study, 48 teens had medical marijuana cards, but 266 teens used medical marijuana without a card.
Cannabis psychosis: gender matters

Posted: 23 Jul 2015 05:39 AM PDT

A greater proportion of men than women suffer from cannabis psychoses, a new research study shows. There has been much research exploring the nature of the relationship between cannabis and psychosis, however the role of gender in relation to cannabis psychosis is less well explored and understood.
Inhaled cannabis shown effective for diabetic neuropathy pain

Posted: 20 Jul 2015 08:51 AM PDT

Inhaled cannabis reduces diabetic neuropathy and the analgesic effect is dose-dependent, new research suggests. Researchers conducted a randomized, double-blind study evaluating 16 subjects to assess the efficacy and tolerability of inhaled cannabis for treating pain caused by diabetic peripheral neuropathy (DPN).
No bones about it: Cannabis may be used to treat fractures

Posted: 16 Jul 2015 09:43 AM PDT

A new study explores another promising new medical application for marijuana. According to the research, the administration of the non-psychotropic component significantly helps heal bone fractures.
Marijuana users substitute alcohol at 21

Posted: 07 Jul 2015 09:04 AM PDT

A recent study looked at marijuana and alcohol use in people between the ages of 18 and 24. It’s probably not surprising that the results show a drastic increase in alcohol consumption in people just over 21; after all, that’s the minimum legal age to drink. What an economist-researcher found remarkable is that, at the same age, there was an equally dramatic drop in marijuana use.
Adolescents who view medical marijuana ads more likely to use the drug, study finds

Posted: 06 Jul 2015 12:48 PM PDT

A new study raises questions about whether there is a need to revise prevention programming for youth as the availability, visibility and legal status of marijuana changes. The report found that adolescents who saw advertising for medical marijuana were more likely to either report using marijuana or say they planned to use the substance in the future.
What effect does marijuana really have on weight gain? It’s complicated

Posted: 30 Jun 2015 05:01 AM PDT

While cannabis alters the functions of neurobiological circuits controlling appetite, its effect on weight gain is complex since several factors appear to be involved. The main finding of the study shows that long-term cannabis use indeed influences weight gain, although its effects may differ by gender.
Getting high in senior year: Researchers examine whether reasons for smoking pot are associated

Posted: 29 Jun 2015 06:26 AM PDT

A new study examines how reasons for illicit marijuana use relates to the use of other drugs individually, rather than grouping them into a single “illicit drug” group.
What’s the impact of marijuana on driving?

Posted: 23 Jun 2015 03:04 PM PDT

Drivers who use alcohol and marijuana together weave more on a virtual roadway than drivers who use either substance independently, a new study has found. However, the cocktail of alcohol and marijuana does not double the effect of the impairment.
Medical marijuana ‘edibles’ mostly mislabeled: Many too weak, some surprisingly strong

Posted: 23 Jun 2015 08:31 AM PDT

The vast majority of edible cannabis products sold in a small sample of medical marijuana dispensaries carried labels that overstated or understated the amount of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), a proof-of-concept study shows. Though the scope of the study was small, the researchers say, the results of the study suggest some medical cannabis patients could be unintentionally overdosing or are being cheated by mislabeled products.
Mixed findings regarding quality of evidence supporting benefit of medical marijuana

Posted: 23 Jun 2015 08:31 AM PDT

In an analysis of the findings of nearly 80 randomized trials that included about 6,500 participants, there was moderate-quality evidence to support the use of cannabinoids (chemical compounds that are the active principles in cannabis or marijuana) for the treatment of chronic pain and lower-quality evidence suggesting that cannabinoids were associated with improvements in nausea and vomiting due to chemotherapy, sleep disorders, and Tourette syndrome.
Adolescents uncertain about risks of marijuana, e-cigarettes, study finds

Posted: 23 Jun 2015 06:55 AM PDT

Teenagers are very familiar with the risks of smoking cigarettes, but are much less sure whether marijuana or e-cigarettes are harmful, according to a new study. The researchers compared teens’ knowledge of cigarettes, e-cigarettes and marijuana because they heard from teachers, parents and youth that anti-smoking efforts needed to address more than just conventional cigarettes.
Legalizing medical marijuana does not increase use among adolescents

Posted: 15 Jun 2015 04:06 PM PDT

A nationwide study analyzing 24 years of data (1991 to 2014) from over one million American adolescents in the 48 contiguous states has found no evidence that legalizing the use of marijuana for medical purposes leads to increased use among teenagers.
Rising rate of marijuana exposure among children 5 years old and younger

Posted: 08 Jun 2015 05:16 AM PDT

Debates about legalizing marijuana have focused on crime rates, economic benefits, and health effects among adults. But a new study shows that the risk to young children of swallowing, breathing in or otherwise being exposed to marijuana also needs to be considered.
Any dose of alcohol combined with cannabis significantly increases levels of THC in blood

Posted: 27 May 2015 08:27 AM PDT

Cannabis plus alcohol is one of the most frequently detected drug combinations in car accidents, yet the interaction of these two compounds is still poorly understood. A study shows for the first time that the simultaneous use of alcohol and cannabis produces significantly higher blood concentrations of cannabis’s main psychoactive constituent, THC, as well as THC’s primary active metabolite than cannabis use alone.
Cannabis use can be prevented, reduced or delayed

Posted: 26 May 2015 05:49 AM PDT

Contrary to some popular beliefs, marijuana is harmful to adolescent brains. Researchers have found that targeting at-risk youth through school programs can limit their use of this drug.
Smoking marijuana may cause early puberty and stunts growth in boys

Posted: 18 May 2015 04:16 PM PDT

Boys who smoke marijuana go through puberty earlier but grow more slowly than those who have never smoked the drug according to a new study.
Association between teen sleep patterns, alcohol or marijuana use

Posted: 18 May 2015 01:38 PM PDT

Studying adolescents in Southern California, researchers found that the link between sleep and alcohol/marijuana use was consistent even after controlling for other known risk factors, such as depression. For every 10 minutes later that teens went to bed, there was a 6 percent increased risk of alcohol or marijuana use in the previous month. In addition, teens who reported significant trouble sleeping were 55 percent more likely to have used alcohol in the past month.
Substance abuse risk not greater in those using medical marijuana with prescribed opioids

Posted: 18 May 2015 05:18 AM PDT

Among people who use medical cannabis for chronic pain, those who also take prescription pain medications are not at increased risk for serious alcohol and other drug involvement, according to a study.
Strong evidence still lacking on medical marijuana for pain

Posted: 15 May 2015 05:32 AM PDT

With increasing numbers of chronic pain patients experimenting with marijuana to get relief, physicians need to learn more about the plant and its constituents to counsel patients appropriately about its safety and possible analgesic benefits, according to a leading medical marijuana researcher.
Medical marijuana pill may not be effective in treating behavioral symptoms of dementia

Posted: 13 May 2015 01:39 PM PDT

Medical marijuana pills may not help treat behavioral symptoms of dementia, such as aggression, pacing and wandering, a new study concludes. However, researchers did find that the drug dosage used in the clinical trial was safe and well-tolerated.
‘Extreme’ exposure to secondhand cannabis smoke causes mild intoxication

Posted: 13 May 2015 07:29 AM PDT

Secondhand exposure to cannabis smoke under ‘extreme conditions,’ such as an unventilated room or enclosed vehicle, can cause nonsmokers to feel the effects of the drug, have minor problems with memory and coordination, and in some cases test positive for the drug in a urinalysis, a new study concludes.
The dark side of cannabis: Panic attacks, nausea

Posted: 05 May 2015 07:21 AM PDT

Although the use of cannabis as a medical drug is currently booming, we should not forget that leisure time consumption — for example, smoking weed — can cause acute and chronic harms. These include panic attacks, impaired coordination of movement, and nausea, as researchers show. The symptoms depend on a patient’s age, the amount of the drug consumed, and the frequency of drug use.
Keeping legalized marijuana out of hands of kids

Posted: 04 May 2015 05:21 AM PDT

As the realities of legalized marijuana take hold in four states and the District of Columbia, legislators and regulators could learn a lot from the successes – and failures – of the tobacco and alcohol industries in keeping their harmful products out of the hands of children and adolescents.
Cannabis consumers show greater susceptibility to false memories

Posted: 21 Apr 2015 07:49 AM PDT

Consumers of cannabis are more prone to experiencing false memories. One of the known consequences of consuming this drug is the memory problems it can cause. Chronic consumers show more difficulties than the general population in retaining new information and recovering memories. The new study also reveals that the chronic use of cannabis causes distortions in memory, making it easier for imaginary or false memories to appear.
Most Americans say medical marijuana shouldn’t be used by kids or in front of kids, legal or not

Posted: 20 Apr 2015 05:45 AM PDT

Medical marijuana and children don’t mix, most Americans say. While nearly two-thirds of people agree that their state should allow medical marijuana for adults, half as many — just over a third — say it should be allowed for children, according to a new poll representing a national sample of adults in the U.S.

Source: Big Pharma Sweating Bullets As 80% of Cannabis Users Give Up Prescriptions Pills for Pot

Based on the scant knowledge available regarding the endocannabinoid system and cannabinoid science overall, some researchers have theorized that many diseases, like multiple sclerosis and fibromyalgia, may be caused by a simple deficiency of endogenous (internally produced) cannabinoids (also called endocannabinoids). This condition has been labeled Clinical Endocannabinoid Deficiency, or CECD (it is also sometimes called Endocannabinoid Deficiency Syndrome). […]

Source: What is Cannabinoid Deficiency? | Whaxy