Marijuana and Memory Loss



Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the main psychoactive ingredient in marijuana, is known to impair nearly all aspects of memory. There is one exception, though. THC does not affect the recall of existing memories.

The most obvious effect of THC is the disruption of short-term memory. This means it will be harder to form new memories while high. THC also impairs the consolidation of short-term memories into long-term memories. This makes it difficult to remember what happened during the high — even after it wears off.

But THC does not impair your ability to recall existing memories. So, marijuana users will be able to remember things like their name and where they live, no matter how high they might get. Similarly, marijuana use does not lead to memory loss or dementia.

In fact, experts believe that the body’s endocannabinoid system — a biological system made up of naturally occurring, marijuana-like compounds — acts to regulate memory formation. Specifically, it seems to function as a filter of sorts, preventing the brain from being overloaded with irrelevant or useless memories.

The effects of THC on memory seem to depend on dose, with larger doses having a more severe effect. But studies also show that frequent users tend to be more tolerant to marijuana and its effects.

Some studies suggest that CBD may act to reduce the memory impairments of THC. However, not enough research exists to say for certain whether this is true.

While memory impairment is a downside for most marijuana users, THC can help some people forget bad memories.

In fact, studies show that the endocannabinoid system is directly involved with the extinction of negative memories. By acting on the endocannabinoid system, THC is believed to facilitate this extinction.

As a result, THC is believed to hold promise in treating anxiety disorders such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Experts believe that marijuana can help patients with PTSD cope with traumatic memories by improving their ability to forget.

More at: Leaf Science

GROW TIP: Properly Drying Your Harvest



Once the marijuana plants have been harvested, they have obviously ceased to produce new cannabinoids and resins. The main changes to the potency will be negative, but effective drying and storage can help mitigate the effects. Most of the weight contained in the plant is water and drying will cause the liquid to evaporate, ensuring that the marijuana will burn evenly and smoke well.

lf you were impatient, and tried to quickly cut, dry, and smoke a bud prior to your harvest, you probably noticed how poorly it smoked. This is due to the water that comprises well over half (more that 60%) of its weight.
It probably didn’t get you high either, since drying also helps to activate the cannabinoids within the marijuana plant. But since you are a prudent cannabis grower, you waited until your buds were perfectly ripe and ready.

There are several methods to consider when drying marijuana, and they range from quick and easy, to slightly more involved but not much more difficult. The first method that I will describe is the slowest but by the far the most effective in terms of sealing in the aroma and taste of your buds. Simply hang the buds upside down in a secure dark place such as a closet or room with sealed windows and a good draft. It is important that air be able to circulate while the marijuana plants are being dried. This means that you may have to exercise some caution in terms of where you might be able to safely dry the plants – they will be very, very pungent.

Use a fan to keep the air circulating and be sure to separate the plants or you could lose a lot of your buds to mold. Removing the large green leaves and stems speeds the drying process since those parts of the plant contain much more water. Do not dry the marijuana in the sunlight as the buds will lose potency, their color and some of their taste. They may also become brittle, which will make them smoke very harshly.

If your drying room is very humid, or if it is raining outside pay special attention to your bud and make sure that the room is well ventilated. You will have to be especially vigilant under these conditions with respect to mold. This is the reason that the drying area should be secure: your multiple trips should not arouse suspicion. Expect the drying time for a large amount of marijuana plants to be at least ten days to two weeks.

Thank You: I Love Growing Marijuana

STUDY Marijuana Linked to Fewer Brain Injury Deaths


People who use marijuana may be more likely to survive a serious head injury than people who don't, a new study suggests.

At one hospital, the death rate after traumatic brain injury was lower among people who tested positive for tetrahydrocannabinol (THC, the active ingredient in marijuana) than among people who tested negative for it, researchers found.

“This data fits with previous data showing that (THC) may be neuroprotective,” Dr. David Plurad, one of the study's authors, said in a phone interview.

Experiments in animals have found that THC may protect the brain after injury, Plurad and his colleagues write in The American Surgeon. Little is known about the specific effects of THC on brain injury in humans, however.
For the new study, the researchers reviewed data on 446 adults treated at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center in Torrance, California for traumatic brain injuries. All had been tested for THC.

Overall, approximately one in five patients tested positive for THC and one in 10 patients died after their injury.

About 2.4 percent of people who tested positive for THC died, compared to about 11.5 percent of those with negative THC tests.

People who tested positive for THC were about 80 percent less likely to die, compared to people with negative THC tests, researchers found after they adjusted the numbers to account for age, gender, injury severity and type.
Previous studies have also suggested that alcohol may protect the brain in traumatic brain injuries, Plurad said. Those studies did not account for the presence of THC, however.

“We included the presence of alcohol in our statistical analysis, and it didn't turn out to be as protective as the presence of the marijuana,” he said, adding that future studies examining the effects of alcohol on traumatic brain injury should account for the presence of THC.

One concern with the study, according to Plurad, is that the test for THC could not distinguish occasional from regular users. A person could test positive after having used marijuana days or even weeks before.
Given that marijuana is inexpensive and may have some medical benefits, its therapeutic effects are worth investigating further, he added.

“There's not going to be one answer, is marijuana good for you, is marijuana bad for you,” he added. “Like most things in life, and particularly medicine, it's going to be somewhere in between.”

via: Reuters

Why Marijuana makes everything so Tasty and Delicious

 
According to a study published earlier this year, marijuana use makes food taste better and enhances a consumers sense of smell. The study, published in the journal Nature Neuroscience reported that marijuana has an effect on the cannabinoid receptors in the brain. This results in an increased food intake as a result of a more accurate and improved sense of smell.

In the study, mice were used, however this information has implications for populations of people who have problems with food consumption. Patients in recovery from serous eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa are a group of people who could potentially benefit from this information.

The study was led by Giovanni Marsicano, a researcher from the Université De Bordeaux who is particularly interested in the endocannabionoid system. Marsicano and a team of neuroscientists from Europe found that the primary psychoactive ingredient in marijuana, THC, can fit inside receptors in the olfactory bulb in the brain. This means that the senses of taste and smell are enhanced when marijuana is used. When food smells better, there is an effect on appetite which leads to a greater consumption due to an increase in smelling accuracy. Basically, food is more appealing when sense of smell is sharp.

Marsicano explains that feeding disorders such as anorexia nervosa are often accompanied by an altered perception of food. As smell is a sense which is linked to the intake of food, it is a sense which is altered in diseases such as this. The ability to regulate or change this may be a future therapy useful in this type of disorder.

Mice are often used in laboratory trials as they share some cognitive similarities to humans. In the study, mice were given tests to access their sense of smell. These tests consisted of almond and banana oils. Initially, the mice showed great interest in the oils and sniffed at them a lot. After a while however, the mice showed a decreasing level of interest. This is a well documented phenomenon referred to as olfactory habituation.

When the mice had been given a dose of THC, they did not show a decreased level of interest in the oils after time. These mice also demonstrated an increase in appetite and ate a lot more than the mice who had not been given THC. The scientists then tested the THC on a set of mice genetically engineered to not have any cannabinoid receptors in their olfactory bulbs. In these mice, there was no effect when they were given THC, they did not sniff at the oils for longer, nor did they eat more food. The researchers concluded that it was the effect that THC had on the olfactory receptors in the brain that was responsible for the increase in appetite, which in turn may have been due to enhanced sense of smell.

From this study, a conclusion has been drawn surrounding the way in which marijuana increases appetite by improving the way food smells and tastes. This in turn also promotes feelings of well being and increases happiness.

By Tabitha Farrar at: Liberty Voice

CBD vs Parkinson's Disease


The administration of cannabidiol (CBD), a nonpsychotropic cannabinoid, is associated with improved quality of life in patients with Parkinson’s disease, according clinical trial data published online ahead of print in the Journal of Psychopharmacology.

Investigators at the University of São Paulo in Brazil assessed the efficacy of CBD versus placebo in 21 subjects with Parkinson’s. Authors reported that the administration of 300 mg doses of CBD per day was associated with “significantly different mean total scores” in subjects’ well-being and quality of life compared to placebo.

Separate assessments of CBD versus placebo reported that the cannabinoid did not appear to mitigate general symptoms of the disease, nor was it shown to be neuroprotective.

“This study points to a possible effect of CBD in improving measures related to the quality of life of PD patients without psychiatric comorbidities,” investigators concluded. They added, “We found no statistically significant differences concerning the motor symptoms of PD; however, studies involving larger samples and with systematic assessment of specific symptoms of PD are necessary in order to provide stronger conclusions regarding the action of CBD in PD.”

Clinical reports have previously indicated that both CBD and/or whole-plant cannabis may address various symptom’s of Parkinson’s disease, including improvement in motor symptoms, pain reduction, improved sleep, and a reduction in the severity of psychotic episodes.

Survey data of patients with PD indicates that almost half of all subjects who try cannabis report experiencing subjective relief from the plant.

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