Cannabis and Mood Disorders.

 “The present review will provide an overview of the neurobiology, epidemiology, clinical impact, and treatment of cannabis use disorder (CUD) in mood disorders.

Patients with mood disorders including major depressive disorder (MDD) and bipolar disorder (BD) have higher rates of cannabis use, and CUD compared to the general population. Reasons for this association are not clear, nor are the putative therapeutic effects of cannabis use, or its components delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD), in these illnesses.

Cannabis use may be associated mood disorders, but more research is needed to increase our understanding of the mechanisms for this association, and to develop more effective treatments for this comorbidity.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30643708

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs40429-018-0214-y

“Antidepressant-like effect of delta9-tetrahydrocannabinol and other cannabinoids isolated from Cannabis sativa L. Results of this study show that Delta(9)-THC and other cannabinoids exert antidepressant-like actions, and thus may contribute to the overall mood-elevating properties of cannabis.”   https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20332000

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∆9-Tetrahydrocannabinol, a major marijuana component, enhances the anesthetic effect of pentobarbital through the CB1 receptor.

 “∆9 Tetrahydrocannabinol (∆9-THC) and cannabidiol (CBD), major psychoactive constituents of marijuana, induce potentiation of pentobarbital-induced sleep in mice.

We have elucidated the mechanism of enhancement of the anesthetic effect of pentobarbital by cannabinoids.

These results suggest that binding of ∆9-THC to the CB1 receptor is involved in the synergism with pentobarbital, and that potentiating effect of CBD with pentobarbital may differ from that of ∆9-THC. We successfully demonstrated that ∆9-THC enhanced the anesthetic effect of pentobarbital through the CB1 receptor.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30636988

“The pharmacological results indicate the effect of ∆9-THC co-administered with pentobarbital was a synergistic, but not additive, action in mice. Further evidence suggests the CB1 receptor plays an important role as a trigger in potentiating pentobarbital-induced sleep by ∆9-THC.”

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs11419-018-0457-2

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Attenuation Effect of Cannabinoid Type 1 Receptor Activation on Methamphetamine-Induced Neurodegeneration and Locomotion Impairments among Male Rats.

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“A number of neuroimaging studies on human addicts have revealed that abuse of Methamphetamine (METH) can induce neurodegenerative changes in various brain regions like the cerebral cortex and cerebellum. Although the underlying mechanisms of METH-induced neurotoxicity have been studied, the cellular and molecular mechanisms of METH-induced neurotoxicity remain to be clarified.

Previous studies implicated that cannabinoid type 1 receptors (CB1Rs) exert neuroprotective effects on several models of cerebral toxicity, but their role in METH-induced neurotoxicity has been rarely investigated. Moreover, the cerebellum was considered as a potential target to evaluate the effects of cannabinoids on locomotion activity as the CB1Rs are most widely distributed in the molecular layer of cerebellum. Therefore, the present study was carried out to evaluate whether neurodegeneration induced in the cerebellum tissue implicated in locomotion deficit induced by METH.

FINDINGS:

The results of the present study demonstrated that repeated exposure to METH increased cerebellar degeneration level as compared to the saline and dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) groups. In addition, METH-treated rats showed hyperactivity as compared to the saline and DMSO groups. Pretreatment with WIN significantly attenuated neurodegeneration and hyperactivity induced by METH.

CONCLUSION:

The findings of this study provided evidence that CB1Rs may serve as a therapeutic strategy for attenuation of METH-induced locomotor deficits.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30574283

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6294485/

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Alcohol Use and Risk of Related Problems Among Cannabis Users Is Lower Among Those With Medical Cannabis Recommendations, Though Not Due To Health.

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“A small body of work has started developing cannabis use “typologies” for use in treatment and prevention.

Two potentially relevant dimensions for classifying cannabis use typologies are medical versus recreational cannabis use and the co-use of cannabis and alcohol.

Here we compare alcohol use and related problems between cannabis users with and without medical cannabis recommendations.

Cannabis users with medical cannabis recommendations drink less and have fewer alcohol-related problems than those without recommendations, even after adjusting for health status.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30573025

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What does the ecological and epidemiological evidence indicate about the potential for cannabinoids to reduce opioid use and harms? A comprehensive review.

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“Pre-clinical research supports that cannabinoids reduce opioid dose requirements, but few studies have tested this in humans. This review evaluates ecological and epidemiological studies that have been cited as evidence that medical cannabis use may reduce opioid use and opioid-related harms. Medline and Embase were searched for relevant articles. Data were extracted on study setting, analyses approach, covariates, and outcomes. Eleven ecological and 14 epidemiological studies were found. In ecological studies, states that allow medical cannabis laws have reported a slower rate of increase in opioid overdose deaths compared with states without such laws. These differences have increased over time and persisted after controlling for state sociodemographic characteristics and use of prescription monitoring programmes. Few studies have controlled for other potential confounders such as opioid dependence treatment and imprisonment rates. Some epidemiological studies provide evidence that cannabis availability may reduce opioid use, but are limited by selection bias, cross-sectional designs, and self-reported assessments of the opioid-sparing effects of cannabis. Some epidemiological and ecological studies suggest that cannabis may reduce opioid use and harms, although important methodological weaknesses were identified. Well-designed clinical studies may provide more conclusive evidence on whether cannabinoids can reduce opioid use and related harm.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30522342

https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/09540261.2018.1509842?journalCode=iirp20

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Reduced prevalence of alcoholic gastritis in hospitalized individuals who consume cannabis.

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“Alcoholic gastritis, a superficial erosive disease of the stomach, is a common manifestation of risky alcohol use. In contrast, cannabis which is frequently co-used with alcohol suppresses gastric acidity and might counteract the deleterious effect of alcohol on the gastric mucosa.

RESULTS:

Our study revealed that among risky alcohol users, cannabis co-users have a lower prevalence of alcoholic gastritis compared to non-cannabis users (1,289[1,169-1,421] vs. 1,723[1,583-1,875] per 100,000 hospitalizations for risky alcohol use), resulting in a 25% decreased probability of alcoholic gastritis (aRR:0.75[0.66-0.85]; p-value:<0.0001). Furthermore, dependent cannabis usage resulted in a lower prevalence of alcoholic gastritis when compared to both non-dependent-cannabis users (0.72[0.52-0.99]), and to non-cannabis-users (0.56[0.41-0.76]).

CONCLUSIONS:

We reveal that risky alcohol drinking combined with cannabis use is associated with reduced prevalence of alcohol-associated gastritis in patients. Given increased cannabis legislation globally, understanding if and how the specific ingredients in cannabis plant extract can be used in the treatment of alcoholic gastritis is paramount. In this regard, further molecular mechanistic studies are needed to delineate the mechanisms of our novel findings not only for alcoholic gastritis but also gastritis from other causes.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30536396

https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/acer.13930

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Behavioral effects of psychostimulants in mutant mice with cell-type specific deletion of CB2 cannabinoid receptors in dopamine neurons.

Behavioural Brain Research

“Activation of the endocannabinoid system modulate dopaminergic pathways that are involved in the effects of psychostimulants including amphetamine, cocaine, nicotine and other drugs of abuse. Genetic deletion or pharmacological activation of CB2 cannabinoid receptor is involved in the modulation of the effects of psychostimulants and their rewarding properties. Taken together, our data suggest that CB2Rs play a role in the modulation of dopamine-related effects of psychostimulants and could be exploited as therapeutic target in psychostimulant addiction and other psychiatric disorders associated with dopamine dysregulation.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30508607

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0166432818311987?via%3Dihub

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Inhibition of Monoacylglycerol Lipase Reduces the Reinstatement of Methamphetamine-Seeking and Anxiety-Like Behaviors in Methamphetamine Self-Administered Rats.

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“Methamphetamine is a highly addictive psychostimulant with reinforcing properties. Our laboratory previously found that Δ8-tetrahydrocannabinol, an exogenous cannabinoid, suppressed the reinstatement of methamphetamine-seeking behavior.

The purpose of this study was to determine whether the elevation of endocannabinoids modulates the reinstatement of methamphetamine-seeking behavior and emotional changes in methamphetamine self-administered rats.

RESULTS:

JZL184 (32 and 40 mg/kg, i.p.), an inhibitor of monoacylglycerol lipase, significantly attenuated both the cue- and stress-induced reinstatement of methamphetamine-seeking behavior. Furthermore, URB597 (3.2 and 10 mg/kg, i.p.), an inhibitor of fatty acid amide hydrolase, attenuated only cue-induced reinstatement. AM251, a cannabinoid CB1 receptor antagonist, antagonized the attenuation of cue-induced reinstatement by JZL184 but not URB597. Neither JZL184 nor URB597 reinstated methamphetamine-seeking behavior when administered alone. In the elevated plus-maze test, rats that were in withdrawal from methamphetamine self-administration spent less time in the open arms. JZL184 ameliorated the decrease in time spent in the open arms.

CONCLUSION:

We showed that JZL184 reduced both the cue- and stress-induced reinstatement of methamphetamine-seeking and anxiety-like behaviors in rats that had self-administered methamphetamine. It was suggested that a decrease in 2-arachidonoylglycerol in the brain could drive the reinstatement of methamphetamine-seeking and anxiety-like behaviors.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30481332

https://academic.oup.com/ijnp/advance-article/doi/10.1093/ijnp/pyy086/5210886

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Disentangling longitudinal relations between youth cannabis use, peer cannabis use, and conduct problems: developmental cascading links to cannabis use disorder.

Publication cover image

“To determine whether cannabis use during adolescence can increase risk not only for cannabis use disorder (CUD) but also for conduct problems, potentially mediated by exposure to peers who use cannabis.

Change in cannabis use did not predict changes in conduct problems or peer cannabis use over time, controlling for gender, race-ethnicity and socio-economic status.

Cannabis use in adolescence does not appear to lead to greater conduct problems or association with cannabis-using peers apart from pre-existing conduct problems.

Instead, adolescents who (1) increasingly affiliate with cannabis-using peers or (2) have increasing levels of conduct problems are more likely to use cannabis, and this cascading chain of events appears to predict cannabis use disorder in emerging adulthood.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30457181

https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/add.14456

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Patients’ and clinicians’ perspectives of co-use of cannabis and opioids for chronic non-cancer pain management in primary care.

International Journal of Drug Policy

“The prevalence of opioid-associated morbidity and mortality underscores the need for research on non-opioid treatments for chronic non-cancer pain (CNCP). Pain is the most common medical condition for which patients request medical cannabis. Limited research indicates that patients are interested in cannabis as a potential addition to or replacement for opioid medication. This analysis reports on CNCP patient and clinician perceptions about the co-use of cannabis and opioids for CNCP management.

METHODS:

We interviewed 23 clinicians and 46 CNCP patients, using semi-structured interview guides, from six safety-net clinics across the San Francisco Bay Area, and 5 key stakeholders involved in CNCP management. We used a modified grounded theory approach to code and analyze transcripts.

RESULTS:

CNCP patients described potential benefits of co-use of cannabis and opioids for pain management and concerns about dosing and addictive potential. Patients reported seeking cannabis when unable to obtain prescription opioids. Clinicians stated that their patients reported cannabis being helpful in managing pain symptoms. Clinicians expressed concerns about the potential exacerbation of mental health issues resulting from cannabis use.

CONCLUSION:

Clinicians are hampered by a lack of clinically relevant information about cannabis use, efficacy and side-effects. Currently no guidelines exist for clinicians to address opioid and cannabis co-use, or to discuss the risk and benefits of cannabis for CNCP management, including side effects. Cannabis and opioid co-use was commonly reported by patients in our sample, yet rarely addressed during clinical CNCP care. Further research is needed on the risks and benefits of cannabis and opioid co-use.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30472467

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0955395918302287

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