Sunday, August 23, 2009

Study: Marijuana May Protect Against Alcohol Brain Damage

The study suggests that not only is marijuana safer than alcohol, it may actually protect against some of the damage that booze causes.

( WASHINGTON, D.C.) - A study just published online by the journal Neurotoxicology and Teratology suggests that marijuana may protect the brain from some of the damage caused by binge drinking.

The study, by researchers at the University of California San Diego, used a type of high-tech scan called diffusion tensor imaging to compare microscopic changes in brain white matter.

The subjects were students aged 16-to-19, divided into three groups: binge drinkers (defined as having five or more drinks at one sitting for boys or four or more for girls), binge drinkers who also smoked marijuana, and a control group who had very little or no experience with either alcohol or drugs.

As expected, the binge-drinking-only group showed evidence of white matter damage in eight regions examined, as demonstrated by lower fractional anisotropy (FA) scores. But in a finding the researchers describe as "unexpected," the binge-drinking/marijuana group had lower FA scores than the controls in only three of eight regions, and in seven regions the binge-drinking/marijuana group had higher scores -- indicating less damage -- than the binge drinkers who did not use marijuana.

Brain white matter tracts were "more coherent in adolescents who binge drink and use marijuana than in adolescents who report only binge drinking," the researchers wrote.

"It is possible that marijuana may have some neuroprotective properties in mitigating alcohol-related oxidative stress or excitotoxic cell death," as has already been shown in lab and animal studies.

"This study suggests that not only is marijuana safer than alcohol, it may actually protect against some of the damage that booze causes," said Steve Fox, Marijuana Policy Project director of state campaigns and co-author of the new book, "Marijuana Is Safer: So Why Are We Driving People to Drink?" (which hit number 14 on the bestseller list). "It's far better for teens not to drink or smoke marijuana, but our nation's leaders send a dangerous message by defending laws that encourage the use of alcohol over marijuana."

REFERENCE: Jacobus, J. et al. "White matter integrity in adolescents with histories of marijuana use and binge drinking." Neurotoxicology and Teratology.

Source:, the largest marijuana policy reform organization in the United States. MPP believes that the best way to minimize the harm associated with marijuana is to regulate marijuana in a manner similar to alcohol.

Aug-21-2009 11:32


Anonymous said...

Long term dope smoking put my brother into paranoia, then psychosis, then schizophrenia. He ended his own life and wrote in his suicide letter how badly dope had affected his life and how totally addicted he had been. Pro marijuana people are either misguided or too young to know the real damage it causes. Those of you behind this web site... well, I hope you go into psychosis then suffer schizophrenia for many years then rot in hell.

Anonymous said...

wow that was mean spirited,I believe we should study it more before we confirm that Marijuana causes psychosis or schizophrenia.
Im Talking about real facts not stories

Anonymous said...

sorry to read for your brother may he rest in peace and may you and your family find some comfort somehow,(i am just a browsing blogger not anyone who runs the site)I realize suicide is very painful hard greiving for the loss of your loved one.That hurts real bad

Anonymous said...

sorry about the loss i know you must take the anger and sadness of your brother on something but ,, that his fault everyone has their own will .. and everything is excess is bad even water so don't go blaming cannabis for things

Anonymous said...

dude first you have to know that marijuana cannot induce schizophrenia or any of the one you said, the disease must already be under jacent in the person for marijuana to trigger it. then you say that your bro was addicted and that young people are too young than maybe your brother is too dumb to have a reasonable use or to quit so stop telling bullshit about marijuana

Cannabis Man said...

Your brother was obviously into other things too, as there are vast medical studies to back up what I say cannabis cannot cause psychosis or schizophrenia.
I do feel for you as people really shouldn't take theirs lives its a selfish act by a selfish person(having close relatives and friends that have done it) they leave everyone behind in pain.
I'm sorry you feel the need to not do your research and blame others and cannabis. God bless you anonymous I hope your pain is eased soon