12
   

Marijuana: Does it kill brain cells or does it affect only the lungs?

 
 
farmerman
 
  2  
Reply Fri 19 Feb, 2010 06:21 pm
@Ionus,
Resaerch into the effects of THC have concluded that THC DOES destroy nerve cells in the Hippocampus, and thats the part of the brain that associates and creates new event memories.
Rockhead
 
  0  
Reply Fri 19 Feb, 2010 06:24 pm
@farmerman,
is that like STML?


I do stimmel on occasion. (figgered it was an old age thing...)
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Fri 19 Feb, 2010 06:31 pm
@Rockhead,
is what like STML?
Rockhead
 
  1  
Reply Fri 19 Feb, 2010 06:32 pm
@farmerman,
exactly...
0 Replies
 
Ionus
 
  0  
Reply Fri 19 Feb, 2010 06:52 pm
@BillRM,
So for there to be a causative link you think there has to be 100% significance ?
RadAndRandom
 
  1  
Reply Fri 19 Feb, 2010 07:08 pm
@Ionus,
Quote:
Also, it is possible that the brain abnormalities may have predisposed the subjects to drug dependence, rather than drug usage causing the brain abnormalities.

Possible, but I doubt it. That would just be an excuse.

Quote:
The only thing in the world that is not harmful is MaryJ ??? Why ?? How ?? Because people live in denial.


You got that right. They don't want to seem like idiots for knowingly destroying themselves. So they deny it. Heh.

And ok, I'll take a look, Sozobe.
0 Replies
 
BillRM
 
  1  
Reply Fri 19 Feb, 2010 07:30 pm
@sozobe,
Quote:
But it's some actual science.


Very very little science.
0 Replies
 
BillRM
 
  1  
Reply Fri 19 Feb, 2010 07:36 pm
@RadAndRandom,
Quote:
Wow, that is PERFECT. Exactly what I was looking for. Thank you so much Sozobe!


I am sure you were looking for it of anything at all that would justify your feelings in this matter.

That all you have is your feelings and your wish that casual marijuana use does have some evil effects.

Decades of studies and all we had is a 15 users study selected out of a drug treatment program to back up your feelings how sad.
BillRM
 
  0  
Reply Fri 19 Feb, 2010 07:37 pm
@farmerman,
Quote:
Resaerch into the effects of THC have concluded that THC DOES destroy nerve cells in the Hippocampus, and thats the part of the brain that associates and creates new event memories.


Links to those studies please?
0 Replies
 
BillRM
 
  0  
Reply Fri 19 Feb, 2010 07:39 pm
@Ionus,
Quote:
So for there to be a causative link you think there has to be 100% significance
?

No but there had be to one hell of a lot more hard evidence then your opinion!

Otherwise you could make a case for banning mother milk.
RadAndRandom
 
  1  
Reply Fri 19 Feb, 2010 07:46 pm
@BillRM,
No, it's not that. Haha. I just wanted to have something reasonable to say when I try to tell my friends that it harms them.
BillRM
 
  1  
Reply Fri 19 Feb, 2010 07:58 pm
@RadAndRandom,
Quote:
No, it's not that. Haha. I just wanted to have something reasonable to say when I try to tell my friends that it harms them.


And they are going to come back with something like below that does however share the same problem with the study you are in love with IE a small study group.

Footnote everything from coffee to water is harmful in too great an amount.

http://www.druglibrary.org/schaffer/Library/studies/nc/nc1f.htm


Fink et al. (1971) subsequently studied five medical and graduate students who had been almost daily marihuana smokers in college and were currently weekend smokers. Each subject smoked under laboratory conditions one marihuana cigarette containing 14 mg of THC each morning daily for 21 days.

No subject reported any adverse effects from smoking. The subjects were generally able to conduct their usual daily activities including jobs. However, they reported they did not function completely up to par during the several hour duration of the acute drug effect. There were no effects which persisted for more than three to five hours and cumulative effects were not noted day to day. No persistent decrements were seen in behavior, mental status, EEG, heart, rate, short-term memory, or psychomotor function tests. In sum, daily marihuana smoking for 21 days was well tolerated by well-adjusted graduate students.

Mendelson et al. (1972) performed a Commission-sponsored study of the biological and behavioral concomitants of 21 days repeated doses of marihuana. Subjects were individuals whose life style, activities, values and attributes were more characteristic of the unconventional youthful subculture than most of their peers in the general population. Their mean age was 23. Based on I.Q. testing they were superior intellectually although they had completed, on the average, two-and-a half years of college. Their job histories were rather erratic and characteristic of a pattern of itinerant living. Their family background was a middle or lower-middle socioeconomic status. In addition alcohol use was infrequent while use of drugs, especially hallucinogens and amphetamines, was significant.

Two groups of 10 subjects each were investigated over separate 31-day periods of confinement on a comfortably furnished research ward equipped with an array of recreational materials. A large, open yard was available for outdoor recreational activities. The research period was divided into three periods: a pre-drug period of five days during which the subjects were drug free; a, subsequent 21-day period when marihuana, could be earned by performing a, work-contingent operant task, then purchased and smoked on a free-choice basis; and a five-day post-drug period without access to marihuana.

All attempts were made to not interfere in any way with performance of the operant task or free choice marihuana smoking although the subjects were under constant observation. A vast array of behavioral and biological assessments were made during the experimental period to determine any effect of repeat doses of marihuana over this time.

Two groups of subjects, studied separately, differed primarily in the frequency of marihuana smoking over the past year. Both groups had averaged about five years of marihuana use (range two to 17 years). The first group studied, referred to as the "casual" users by the authors, reported an average frequency of marihuana use, of 7.7 occasions per month (range three to 15 occasions). The second group studied, referred to as the "heavy" users by the authors, reported almost daily use of marihuana (average 33 sessions per month; range 20+ to 75, including one substitute subject to fill the group who only smoked about 10 times a month).


During the first 20 days of the smoking period, the casual group's consumption averaged three cigarettes daily (individual average was one-half to six) while that of the heavy users averaged six-and-a-half cigarettes daily (individual average three to eight-and-a-half). Both groups demonstrated a, progressive trend toward increased daily consumption during the experiment. Close examination of the consumption patterns for individual subjects showed that the trend toward increased use occurred in the subjects who were initially the heaviest users. Several subjects who were initially the least frequent users did not increase their use of marihuana over the course of the study.


Subjects in both groups tended to smoke practically all of each cigarette including the butt. Each cigarette contained about 20 mg- Delta 9 THC. Therefore, the heavy users average daily intake was 130 mg of THC or a total of almost, Joni- -grams of THC over the 21-day period. The casual users average intake was slightly less than half this amount.


No abstinence syndrome or physical dependence was observed after abrupt termination of smoking. Signs of mild to moderate psychological dependence. were possibly seen in the heavy group but no evidence of psychological dependence was seen in the casual users.


No consistent clinically significant physiological or biochemical changes were demonstrated during or after the period of repeated use of marihuana.

Urinalysis, complete blood counts, cell morphologies and differentials, and blood chemistry determinations (calcium, phosphorous, glucose, blood urea nitrogen, uric acid, cholesterol, total protein, albumen, total bilirubin, alkaline phosphatase, lactic dehydrogenase, and serum glutamic oxalacetic transaminase) were unaffected.

Weight gain occurred in all but one subject. Maximal gain was seen during the marihuana smoking period. The subjects were not judged to be clinically malnourished prior to the experiment.

Normal body temperature was not altered. No significant change, in pulmonary function (decreased. vital capacity or acute broncho spasm) was observed during the marihuana smoking period.


Variable inconsistent changes in upright blood pressure were noted. Effects on pulse rate were related only to acute drug administration and were more pronounced during the initial smoking phases. This suggests that tolerance developed to drug-induced tachycardia. No significant electrocardiographic changes were observed. Marihuana smoking had no apparent effect on exercise related cardiac vascular function.


Physical examinations revealed only the development of persistent conjunctival injection, lateral gaze nystagmus and fine, finger tremors. These findings were believed to be acute drug effects and of no clinical significance. No signs of neurological abnormality were observed. No cumulative effect of marihuana to cause, impairment of cognitive function was noted on a battery of tests sensitive to organic brain function.

An increased amount of sleep in both shorter and longer blocks of consecutive hours was observed. Also an increase in the number of discrete episodes of sleep, especially one to three hour episodes also occurred during the marihuana use period. Reappearance of pre-drug pattern was seen during the post-drug period. This reversion appeared to begin toward the end of the drug period which may be indicative of tolerance, to the acute depressant-like effects of marihuana.

Generally, performances on short-term memory, psychomotor skills and time estimation suggests that repeated marihuana smoking had no discernible effect on the ability to improve performance with practice on these measures. Tolerance appeared to develop to the acute decrement in performance on these measures. On the time estimation task, a tendency appeared for the subjects to increasingly overcompensate for the acute drug effect with repeated testing in the nonintoxicated state.


Both casual and heavy users had a marked decrement in total social interaction during the first portion of the marihuana smoking period. Total interaction of the casual subjects continued to diminish subsequently. Heavy users subsequently tended to exceed presmoking levels of interaction indicating they accommodated to the depressant effects of repeat doses of marihuana.

Both groups became progressively more convivial and less task-oriented in group discussions. They offered less suggestions in problem-solving tasks but continued to efficiently solve the problem.

Casual users reported general relative increases in negative daily moods and decreases in positive daily moods during the course of the study. The trend began with the onset of smoking and persisted through the post-smoking period. This trend could be a sequelae of repeated marihuana use or related to non-drug variables (set and setting).

The heavy users did not evidence this trend toward relative increases in dysphoric mood until the post-smoking period. Again this may be related to repeated marihuana use, reflect psychological dependence or be related to set and setting variables, such as boredom and tension associated with the prolonged study period.

Finally, repeated use of marihuana over the 21day period did not decrease motivation to engage in a variety of social and goal-directed behaviors. Almost without exception, every subject earned the maximum number of points every day throughout all non-drug and drug periods. No consistent alteration in pattern of work could be related to repeated marihuana use. Subjects often performed very high work output while they were smoking marihuana and experiencing the maximum drug effects.

Repeated marihuana use, did not decrease subject's motivation to complete the study. Nor was any noticeable effect observed on interest and participation in a variety of personal activities, such as, writing, reading literature, keeping up with current national and world events, and participation in both athletic and esthetic endeavors.



--------------------------------------------------------------------------------





0 Replies
 
BillRM
 
  1  
Reply Fri 19 Feb, 2010 08:09 pm
@Ionus,
Quote:
So for there to be a causative link you think there has to be 100% significance ?


http://www.scienceblog.com/cms/study-say-marijuana-no-gateway-drug-12116.html


Study says marijuana no gateway drug
04 Dec 2006


Marijuana is not a “gateway” drug that predicts or eventually leads to substance abuse, suggests a 12-year University of Pittsburgh study. Moreover, the study’s findings call into question the long-held belief that has shaped prevention efforts and governmental policy for six decades and caused many a parent to panic upon discovering a bag of pot in their child’s bedroom.
The Pitt researchers tracked 214 boys beginning at ages 10-12, all of whom eventually used either legal or illegal drugs. When the boys reached age 22, they were categorized into three groups: those who used only alcohol or tobacco, those who started with alcohol and tobacco and then used marijuana (gateway sequence) and those who used marijuana prior to alcohol or tobacco (reverse sequence).
Nearly a quarter of the study population who used both legal and illegal drugs at some point " 28 boys " exhibited the reverse pattern of using marijuana prior to alcohol or tobacco, and those individuals were no more likely to develop a substance use disorder than those who followed the traditional succession of alcohol and tobacco before illegal drugs, according to the study, which appears in this month’s issue of the American Journal of Psychiatry.
“The gateway progression may be the most common pattern, but it’s certainly not the only order of drug use,” said Ralph E. Tarter, Ph.D., professor of pharmaceutical sciences at the University of Pittsburgh School of Pharmacy and lead author of the study. “In fact, the reverse pattern is just as accurate for predicting who might be at risk for developing a drug dependence disorder.”
In addition to determining whether the gateway hypothesis was a better predictor of substance abuse than competing theories, the investigators sought to identify characteristics that distinguished users in the gateway sequence from those who took the reverse path. Out of the 35 variables they examined, only three emerged to be differentiating factors: Reverse pattern users were more likely to have lived in poor physical neighborhood environments, had more exposure to drugs in their neighborhoods and had less parental involvement as young children. Most importantly, a general inclination for deviance from sanctioned behaviors, which can become evident early in childhood, was strongly associated with all illicit drug use, whether it came in the gateway sequence, or the reverse.
While the gateway theory posits that each type of drug is associated with certain specific risk factors that cause the use of subsequent drugs, such as cigarettes or alcohol leading to marijuana, this study’s findings indicate that environmental aspects have stronger influence on which type of substance is used. That is, if it’s easier for a teen to get his hands on marijuana than beer, then he’ll be more likely to smoke pot. This evidence supports what’s known as the common liability model, an emerging theory that states the likelihood that someone will transition to the use of illegal drugs is determined not by the preceding use of a particular drug but instead by the user’s individual tendencies and environmental circumstances.
“The emphasis on the drugs themselves, rather than other, more important factors that shape a person’s behavior, has been detrimental to drug policy and prevention programs,” Dr. Tarter said. “To become more effective in our efforts to fight drug abuse, we should devote more attention to interventions that address these issues, particularly to parenting skills that shape the child’s behavior as well as peer and neighborhood environments.”
Indeed, according to the study, interventions focusing on behavior modification may be more effective prevention tactics than current anti-drug initiatives. For example, providing guidance to parents " particularly those in high-risk neighborhoods " on how to boost their caregiving skills and foster bonding with their children, could have a measurable effect on a child’s likelihood to smoke marijuana. Also, early identification of children who exhibit antisocial tendencies could allow for interventions before drug use even begins.
Although this research has significant implications for drug abuse prevention approaches, Dr. Tarter notes that the study has some limitations. First, as only male behaviors were studied, further investigation should explore if the results apply to women as well. Also, the examination of behaviors in phases beyond alcohol and marijuana consumption in the gateway series will be necessary.
From University of Pittsburgh Medical Center
Tags:
0 Replies
 
Ionus
 
  -1  
Reply Fri 19 Feb, 2010 11:43 pm
@BillRM,
Quote:
That all you have is your feelings and your wish that casual marijuana use does have some evil effects.
So you use maryJ. It is rather obvious. Cigarette smokers live in denial too. Perhaps you shouild read those long winded posts of yours...this is why people post a link. You seem to be trying to prove alcohol and MaryJ do not have a one way causative link. Perhaps you can show me where that was disputed ?

Ask psychiatrists how many dementia and psychosis patients have drug abuse backgrounds. How many crimes are committed due to drugs ?

Ionus
 
  0  
Reply Fri 19 Feb, 2010 11:55 pm
@BillRM,
Quote:
No but there had be to one hell of a lot more hard evidence then your opinion!


Like the following ??

Quote:
Study of Australian Adolescents (8 years)
A stratified, random sample of 1,943 adolescents was recruited from secondary schools across Victoria, Australia at age 14"15 years. This cohort was interviewed on eight occasions until the age of 24"25 years. At age 24 years, 12% of the sample had used amphetamines in the past year, with 1%"2% using at least weekly. Young adult amphetamine use was predicted strongly by adolescent drug use and was associated robustly with other drug use and dependence in young adulthood. Associations were stronger for more frequent users. Among young adults who had not been using amphetamines at age 20 years, the strongest predictor of use at age 24 years was the use of other drugs, particularly cannabis, at 20 years.[11] Those who were smoking cannabis at the age of 15 were as much as 15 times more likely to be using amphetamines in their early 20s.[12]

[11]^ Louisa Degenhardt et al. Who are the new amphetamine users? A 10-year prospective study of young Australians, 2007
[12]^ ABC News Australia: Cannabis linked to use of amphetamines, 2007-07-18




Quote:
Study of rats
In 2006, the Karolinska Institute in Sweden used twelve rats to examine how adolescent use of cannabis affects subsequent abuse of other illicit drugs. The study gave six of the twelve "teenage" (28"49 days old, or 6.6"10.4 in human years) rats a small dose of THC, reportedly equivalent to one cannabis joint smoked by a human, every three days. The rats were allowed to administer heroin by pushing a lever and the study found the rats given THC took larger doses of heroin (but no such effect was found for amphetamines).

The current findings support the gateway hypothesis demonstrating that adolescence cannabis exposure has an enduring impact on hedonic processing resulting in enhanced opiate intake, possibly as a consequence of alterations in limbic opioid neuronal populations.[13]
The institute examined the brain cells in the rats and found THC alters the opioid system that is associated with positive emotions, which lessens the effects of opiates on rat's brain and thus causes them to use more heroin.[14] Paul Armentano, policy analyst for NORML, claimed because the rats were given THC at the young age of 28 days, is impossible to extrapolate the results of this study to humans. Also, the previously cannabis-exposed adult rats, despite being desensitized to heroin, were no more likely to get addicted (as measured by likelihood of self-administration) than the controls.[15]

[13] Ellgren, Maria: Neurobiological effects of early life cannabis exposure in relation to the gateway hypothesis
[14] Vince, Gaia (2006-07-05). "Why teenagers should steer clear of cannabis". NewScientist.com. http://www.newscientist.com/article.ns?id=dn9488&feedId=teenagers_rss20. Retrieved 2007-05-12.
[15] Smith, Jordan (2006-11-03). "Reefer Madness". The Austin Chronicle. http://www.austinchronicle.com/gyrobase/Issue/column?oid=oid%3A416164. Retrieved 2007-05-13.


RadAndRandom
 
  1  
Reply Fri 19 Feb, 2010 11:57 pm
Wow, that's some interesting articles you got there. And they do prove your point greatly. But what about the article that proves your point wrong?
Why is this topic always so contoversial, and why is there always some way to contradict a theory once it comes up?
Why are people in denial when it is obvious that it causes harm?
If even coffee causes harm to a person's body, then why is marijuana an exception?
Why can't people admit already that yes, marijuana causes harm, and obviously, those who do not use any drugs are much healthier than those who do?
It's common sense. Yet people need evidence to believe something that is obvious. Grr, you people.
Rockhead
 
  1  
Reply Fri 19 Feb, 2010 11:57 pm
@Ionus,
now that pisses me off.

I bet they gave those rats the good stuff, too....
Ionus
 
  1  
Reply Sat 20 Feb, 2010 12:01 am
@Rockhead,
Dont you wish you were a smaller mammal ? Something without the obvious horny appearance of your avatar ..even rabbits get better experiments than a moose.
Rockhead
 
  1  
Reply Sat 20 Feb, 2010 12:03 am
@Ionus,
yes, sometimes. but mooses poops wherever they wants...
RadAndRandom
 
  1  
Reply Sat 20 Feb, 2010 12:06 am
@Ionus,
Quote:
THC alters the opioid system that is associated with positive emotions, which lessens the effects of opiates on rat's brain and thus causes them to use more heroin.


Wow, how they find that out... when they test it out on a rat? It's not like the rat can tell them it's unhappy. Do they do brain scans to see the levels of serotonin or whichever other chemical creates happiness in an organism?
 

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