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July 2009
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THC in adolescence eliminates dependence on opiates in rats deprived of their mothers at birth

Interesting Study

Previously, DaugÚ and her colleagues had shown that rats deprived of their mothers at birth become hypersensitive to the rewarding effect of morphine and heroin (substances belonging to the opiate family), and rapidly become dependent. In addition, there is a correlation between such behavioral disturbances linked to dependence, and hypoactivity of the enkephalinergic system, the endogenous opioid system.
To these rats, placed under stress from birth, the researchers intermittently administered increasingly high doses of THC (5 or 10 mg/kg) during the period corresponding to their adolescence (between 35 and 48 days after birth). By measuring their consumption of morphine in adulthood, they observed that, unlike results previously obtained, the rats no longer developed typical morphine-dependent behavior. Moreover, biochemical and molecular biological data corroborate these findings. In the striatum, a region of the brain involved in drug dependence, the production of endogenous enkephalins was restored under THC, whereas it diminished in rats stressed from birth which had not received THC.

Obviously, this is not a definitive statement about humans, but it’s a very promising line of research.
Gee, I wonder… Will the mainstream media will jump all over this, like they do when studies with much flimsier support conclude some negative effect of cannabis?
Marijuana: the anti-gateway