Saturday, October 15, 2005

Cannabinoids are good for you

The preliminary studies are far from conclusive but a researcher in Canada did a study that suggests certain cannabinoids could be good for your brain.
In mammals, new nerve cells are constantly being produced in a part of the brain called the hippocampus, which is associated with learning, memory, anxiety and depression. Other recreational drugs, such as alcohol, nicotine and cocaine, have been shown to suppress this new growth. Xia Zhang of the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon, Canada, and colleagues decided to see what effects a synthetic cannabinoid called HU210 had on rats' brains.

They found that giving rats high doses of HU210 twice a day for 10 days increased the rate of nerve cell formation, or neurogenesis, in the hippocampus by about 40%.
The effect is similar to Prozac. Unfortunately, another researcher found no such activity using natural THC. I'm not sure I like that only the synthetic showed any results. It might deter research into uses of the natural herb, but it still bolsters the contention that marijuana is not the dangerous drug the prohibitionists make it out to be.


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