Cannabis may combat age-related cognitive decline

Cannabis may combat age-related cognitive decline

Cannabis May Combat Age-Related Cognitive Decline (in rats, of course, but with potential for humans). This article reviews a study of long-term administration of low doses of THC, to rats, of course.  The subjects were divided into groups of young, “mature” and old (for rats – – 2 months, 12 months and 18 months).

To cut to the chase, the results found that the “THC treatment” was “associated with impaired behavioral performance on learning and memory tasks in young mice, but with improved learning and memory in mature and old mice.”

They even have a theory about how this works:

“The same treatment rejuvenated old brains, whereas it made the young brains old. The reason of this phenomenon is that the activity of cannabinoid system declines in aging. In old animals, THC treatment restored the failing cannabinoid system activity, whereas it overactivated the normally functioning cannabinoid system in young animals.”  For those who are interested, the article goes on to review some pretty technical neurophysiology about how this might work. The researchers plan a follow-up study with elderly humans, with and without cognitive impairments, “hopefully within one year.”

Medscape Psychiatry, 5-10-17 (may require a free and easy-to-set up subscription to access)

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