Recreational marijuana legalization: Do more youth use or do youth use more?
Recent results indicate that the effects of recreational marijuana legalization on Oregon teens’ use depends on whether the teens were already using marijuana when legal sales began.
Cigarette smoking is increasing among Americans with drug problems
While cigarette smoking has declined in the US for the past several decades, since 2002 the prevalence of smoking has increased significantly among people with an illicit substance use disorder, according to a new study. Researchers found more than half of individuals with a substance use disorder (56 percent) reported cigarette use in the past month, compared with 18 percent of those without a substance use disorder.
Marijuana may help HIV patients keep mental stamina longer
A chemical found in marijuana, known as tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, has been found to potentially slow the process in which mental decline can occur in up to 50 percent of HIV patients, says a new study.
Medical marijuana for children with cancer? What providers think
Most providers willing to consider medical marijuana use in children with cancer, but those with legal eligibility to certify are less likely to approve.
Marijuana use may not aid patients in opioid addiction treatment
New research finds that frequent marijuana use seems to strengthen the relationship between pain and depression and anxiety, not ease it.
Cannabis linked to bipolar symptoms in young adults
Cannabis use in youth is linked to bipolar symptoms in young adults, finds new research.
Synthetic cannabis-like drug reduces sleep apnea
A synthetic cannabis-like drug in a pill was safe and effective in treating obstructive sleep apnea in the first large multi-site study of a drug for apnea.
More adults use marijuana in states where it is legal
Daily use of marijuana as well as past month rates rose for both men and women aged 26 and older in states with medical marijuana laws in effect. Marijuana use among those younger than 26 years old was generally unaffected by changes in the law.
Can cannabinoids be used to treat cancer?
When cannabinoids activate signaling pathways in cancer cells they can stimulate a cell death mechanism called apoptosis, unleashing a potent anti-tumor effect.
Booze and pot use in teens lessens life success
Young adults dependent on marijuana and alcohol are less likely to achieve adult life goals, according to new research.
Marijuana use associated with cognitive dysfunction in people with HIV who have substance abuse disorder, study finds
Marijuana use is associated with cognitive dysfunction in people with HIV infection who have an alcohol or other drug use disorder, according to a new study.
Regular marijuana use linked to more sex, study finds
Despite concerns among physicians and scientists that frequent marijuana use may impair sexual desire or performance, the opposite appears more likely to be the case, new research indicates.
Pre-clinical study suggests path toward non-addictive painkillers
A pre-clinical study reports that the use of the positive allosteric modulator GAT211 enhances the effect of pain-relief chemicals produced by the body in response to stress or injury. The research is a promising step forward in the search for pain relief methods without the addictive side effects of opioids.
A quarter of problematic pot users have anxiety disorders, many since childhood
About a quarter of adults whose marijuana use is problematic in early adulthood have anxiety disorders in childhood and late adolescence, according to new data.
Limited data on medical cannabis use in children
A systematic review of published studies on the use of medical cannabis in children and adolescents finds a notable lack of studies and a minimal number of the randomized, controlled trials needed to confirm the effectiveness of a treatment.
A new target for marijuana
Cellular-level changes to a part of the brain’s reward system induced by chronic exposure to the psychoactive component of marijuana may contribute to the drug’s pleasurable and potentially addictive qualities, suggests a study in young mice.
Cannabis consumption increases violent behavior in young people in psychiatric care
A new study on cannabis use that involved 1,136 patients (from 18 to 40 years of age) with mental illnesses who had been seen five times during the year after discharge from a psychiatric hospital demonstrates that sustained used of cannabis is associated with an increase in violent behavior in young people. Moreover, the association between persistent cannabis use and violence is stronger than that associated with alcohol or cocaine.
Antidote to synthetic cannabis ‘Spice’ intoxication could be found in slimming drug
Early research has potentially found an antidote that can rapidly stop the intoxicating effects of cannabis and synthetic cannabinoids.
Up to one-quarter of cancer patients use marijuana
A new study conducted in a cancer center in a state with legalized medicinal and recreational marijuana found that approximately one-quarter of surveyed patients used marijuana in the past year, mostly for physical and psychological symptoms.
Cannabis, ‘spice’ – better think twice
Marijuana is the most commonly abused drug in the world, and the advent of synthetic cannabinoids creates additional challenges to the society because of their higher potency and ability to escape drug detection screenings. Scientists have a warning about a new danger coming from cannabinoid abuse.
Medical students not trained to prescribe medical marijuana
More than half of the states in the US now allow some type of legal marijuana use, primarily medical marijuana. But, in a survey of medical residents and deans at the nation’s medical schools, researchers have found that the majority of schools are not teaching their students about medical marijuana, and the majority of students don’t feel prepared to discuss the subject with patients.
Marijuana may produce psychotic-like effects in high-risk individuals
Marijuana may bring on temporary paranoia and other psychosis-related effects in individuals at high risk of developing a psychotic disorder, finds a preliminary study.
Reversing the negative effects of adolescent marijuana use
Researchers have identified a specific mechanism in the prefrontal cortex for some of the negative mental health risks associated with adolescent marijuana use. By demonstrating that adolescent THC exposure modulates the activity of a neurotransmitter called GABA in the prefrontal cortex region of the brain, they were also able to identify a mechanism to reverse those risks.
Do we need to reform international drug treaties as more countries legalize cannabis?
The future of international drug control treaties is in doubt because of recent treaty-violating decisions to legalize cannabis use in Canada, the United States and Uruguay. A professor, whose 2014 review of 20 years of cannabis research made world headlines, thinks so. If decriminalization is the way of the future, he advocates a cautious approach to policy reform that would involve trialing and evaluating the effects of incrementally more liberal drug policies.
CBD may protect against psychiatric risk from high-THC cannabis strains
A study by neuroscientists finds that a non-psychoactive compound in cannabis called cannabidiol, or CBD, appears to protect against the long-term negative psychiatric effects of THC, the primary psychoactive ingredient in cannabis.
Marijuana use amongst youth stable, but substance abuse admissions up
While marijuana use amongst youth remains stable, youth admission to substance abuse treatment facilities has increased.
Marijuana associated with three-fold risk of death from hypertension
Marijuana use is associated with a three-fold risk of death from hypertension, according to new research.
Muted stress response linked to long-term cannabis use
A new study reveals a dampened physiological response to stress in chronic cannabis users. This is the first study to examine the effects of acute stress on salivary cortisol levels in chronic cannabis users compared to non-users.
Pattern of marijuana use during adolescence may impact psychosocial outcomes in adulthood
A pattern of escalating marijuana use in adolescents is linked to higher rates of depression and lower educational accomplishments in adulthood.
Omega-3 fatty acids fight inflammation via cannabinoids
Chemical compounds called cannabinoids are found in marijuana and also are produced naturally in the body from omega-3 fatty acids. A well-known cannabinoid in marijuana, tetrahydrocannabinol, is responsible for some of its euphoric effects, but it also has anti-inflammatory benefits. A new study in animal tissue reveals the cascade of chemical reactions that convert omega-3 fatty acids into cannabinoids that have anti-inflammatory benefits – but without the psychotropic high.
Depression among young teens linked to cannabis use at 18
Young people with chronic or severe forms of depression were at elevated risk for developing a problem with cannabis in later adolescence, found a study looking at the cumulative effects of depression in youth.
Canada should continue with separate medical stream after cannabis is legalized for recreational use: Study
After cannabis is legalized, Canada should continue with a separate medical cannabis stream to keep patients safe, argues a new commentary.
Closing medical marijuana dispensaries increases crime, according to new study
Contrary to popular belief, medical marijuana dispensaries (MMDs) reduce crime in their immediate areas, suggests a new report.
Scientists lay the groundwork for a reliable marijuana breathalyzer
An important step has been taken toward a reliable marijuana breathalyzer by measuring the vapor pressure of delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) — a measurement that, due to the compound’s chemical structure, is very difficult and has not been accomplished before.
Marijuana and vulnerability to psychosis
The link between marijuana use and psychotic-like experiences has been confirmed in a Canadian adolescent cohort.
Legal cannabis laws impact teen use
A new study has found that adolescents living in medical marijuana states with a plethora of dispensaries are more likely to have tried new methods of cannabis use, such as edibles and vaping, at a younger age than those living in states with fewer dispensaries.
Rates of marijuana use, heavy use, and cannabis use disorder depend on where you live
Adult marijuana use rose significantly in states that passed loosely regulated medical marijuana laws (MMLs) according to a new study. The highest increases were reported among adults ages 26 and over. Little change was found in past-month marijuana use among adolescents or young adults between the ages 18 and 25.
Marijuana use among college students on rise following Oregon legalization, study finds
College students attending an Oregon university are using more marijuana now that the drug is legal for recreational use, but the increase is largely among students who also report recent heavy use of alcohol, a new study has found.
Mixing booze, pot is a serious threat to traffic safety
Use of marijuana in combination with alcohol by drivers is especially dangerous, according to a study. Drivers who used alcohol, marijuana, or both were significantly more likely to be responsible for causing fatal two-vehicle crashes compared to drivers who were involved in the same crashes but used neither of the substances.
Why the marijuana and tobacco policy camps are on very different paths
New research looked at diverging trajectories of cannabis and tobacco policies in the US and attempts to explain some of the reasoning behind the different paths, while discussing possible implications.
Teen cannabis use and illicit drug use in early adulthood linked
Researchers have found regular and occasional cannabis use as a teen is associated with a greater risk of other illicit drug taking in early adulthood. The study also found cannabis use was associated with harmful drinking and smoking.
Low-dose THC can relieve stress; more does just the opposite
Low levels tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, the main psychoactive compound in marijuana, does reduce stress, but in a highly dose-dependent manner, new research confirms.
Why pot-smoking declines, but doesn’t end, with parenthood
Adults who smoke marijuana often cut back after becoming parents — but they don’t necessarily quit. The influence of a significant other and positive attitudes toward the drug overall, in addition to the onset of parenthood, also are factors in whether someone uses marijuana.
Legalizing marijuana will harm health of youth in Canada, study shows
The Canadian federal government’s bill C-45 to legalize marijuana in Canada will jeopardize the health of young people and Parliament should vote against it, argues a new article.
Cannabidiol reduces seizures in children with severe epilepsy
Children with Dravet syndrome, a severe form of epilepsy, had fewer seizures after taking a daily oral solution of the cannabis compound called cannabidiol, which does not have the psychoactive properties of marijuana, results from a double-blind, placebo-controlled trial reveal.
Benefits of medical marijuana for treatment of epilepsy examined
Although cannabis had been used for many centuries for treatment of seizure disorders, medical use became prohibited in the 20th century. However, with the loosening of laws regarding medical marijuana, research and clinical use of marijuana-derived substances are increasing. This has prompted the publishing of an in-depth assessment of the potential of cannabinoids for the effective treatment of epilepsy. Cannabinoids are components of the cannabis plant.
A third of high school students ride with drivers who have been drinking
One in three high school students reports riding with a driver who has been drinking, while nearly one in five was in a car where the driver had consumed marijuana, according to a new study.
Trying new marijuana products and edibles is associated with unexpected highs
Unexpected highs are a consequence of using new marijuana products and edibles, products that have flooded the marijuana market since legalization of recreational marijuana use.
Marijuana use tied to poorer school performance
When high school students started smoking marijuana regularly they were less likely to get good grades and want to pursue university, according to a new study.
Cannabis reverses aging processes in the brain, study suggests
Memory performance decreases with increasing age. Cannabis can reverse these ageing processes in the brain. This was shown in mice by scientists at the University of Bonn with their colleagues at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem (Israel). Old animals were able to regress to the state of two-month-old mice with a prolonged low-dose treatment with a cannabis active ingredient. This opens up new options, for instance, when it comes to treating dementia.
ER visits related to marijuana use at a Colorado hospital quadruple after legalization
Visits by teens to a Colorado children’s hospital emergency department and its satellite urgent care centers increased rapidly after legalization of marijuana for commercialized medical and recreational use, according to new research.
Neuroscientists seek brain basis of craving in addiction and binge eating
A new article details the first step in revealing how craving works in the brain. Scientists have now proposed a quantitative model for drug addiction research. The model focuses on craving: the intense, urgent feeling of needing or wanting drugs. Their ongoing research and subsequent findings have the potential to open a new frontier of alcohol and substance abuse treatment.
Cannabis use in adolescence linked to schizophrenia
A new study points to cannabis as a trigger for schizophrenia. The research finds that smoking pot or using cannabis in other ways during adolescence may serve as a catalyst for schizophrenia in individuals already susceptible to the disorder.
Do medical marijuana laws promote illicit cannabis use and disorder?
Illicit cannabis use and cannabis use disorders increased at a greater rate in states that passed medical marijuana laws than in other states, according to latest research. The new study is among the first to analyze the differences in cannabis use and cannabis use disorders before and after states passed medical marijuana laws, as well as differentiate between earlier and more recent periods and additionally examine selected states separately.
Chili peppers and marijuana calm the gut, study suggests
You wouldn’t think chili peppers and marijuana have much in common. But when eaten, both interact with the same receptor in our stomachs, according to a new paper. The research could lead to new therapies for diabetes and colitis, and opens up intriguing questions about the relationship between the immune system, the gut and the brain.
Genetic factors may contribute to adverse effects produced by synthetic cannabinoids
Synthetic cannabinoid abuse is a growing problem in the US. New discoveries tied to genetic factors that increase a person’s risk for experiencing the most dangerous effects of these drugs could lead to more effective treatments and antidotes.
Risk of psychosis from cannabis use lower than originally thought, say scientists
Scientists have shown that the risk of developing psychosis, such as hallucinations, from cannabis use is small compared to the number of total users.
For young adults, cigarettes more pleasurable with alcohol than with pot
Young adults get more pleasure from smoking cigarettes while they are drinking alcohol than they do while using marijuana, according to a new American study.
Natural chemical helps brain adapt to stress
A natural signaling molecule that activates cannabinoid receptors in the brain plays a critical role in stress-resilience — the ability to adapt to repeated and acute exposures to traumatic stress.
Early use of marijuana can increase its negative health impacts
The need for age guidelines for marijuana use is the focus of a new study. The findings show that young users report the most impact to their physical and mental health.