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Cannabis & Psychosis: Robin Murray

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Published on Dec 10, 2009

Robin Murray gives a reasonably balanced view of the hysteria to arise surrounding cannabis and psychosis.

The 'lurid headlines' that sold papers, padded political spin and misinformed the Western world, followed the Lancet Meta-analysis and the spattering of ambitious claims contributing to the "Metadata" they by definition MUST use. Of a sample of 6.2 million 800 smokers had schizophrenia. Or, 0.00125% did and 99.99875% of smokers did not present with SCHIZOPHRENIA - a diagnosed disease, not an acute or transient psychosis. Recent research in Australia is correcting for confounding variables, and finding stronger associations as it draws on more than a static diagnosis.

Further research into the antipsychotic effects of neuroprotective CBD [THC's nice twin] is now emerging. Combined with the role of Anandamide we may speculate [more accurately than Tabloids/magazines] that ASSOCIATIONS arise when those predisposed to schizoid disorders gravitate to frequent use, to self medicate in pursuit of CBD and Anadamide.

With the neuroprotective role of both exocannabinoids [pot] and endocannabinoids [in the body] firmly established it appears the full story of cannabinoid induced - or alleviated - psychotic experience is likely to be highly complex with dual directional impact.

This reality is expected noting the medicinal potential of cannabis renders it more a medication than recreational drug. It is thus logical to raise concerns over hydroponic cannabis, which has a higher THC to CBD ratio, as perhaps contributing to findings - potency is still about half that of hash/hash oil common in the 1970's, 80's and thus claims of higher potency are null and laughably void.

Thus RATIO not CONCENTRATION is most important. Please remember, cannabis does reduce neural volume of both hippocampus and amygdala [memory/emotional memory] significantly. Neuroses and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease are definite risks. Other more subtle changes in pre-frontal cortical acuity [not anatomy] may be quantified, and this is of significant interest to neuroscience. Speculation of neuroanatomical change is justified, and demands research.

As adolescents undergo massive neural "pruning" growing toward adulthood, the combination of these changes added to the emerging complexity of neural impact via cannabinoids, in the growing era of cannabinoid medication, it renders the use of cannabis harder to justify as harmless or 'better than alcohol'.

Decriminalisation, regulation and an immediate escalation of medicinal cannabinoid research is warranted. Prohibition of cannabis must cease and the conservatives who use fear to secure votes held directly, accountable for the suppression of research into vitally needed medications.

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