How THC Replaces Your Brain’s Neurotransmitters


Episode 2 of 5 Check us out on iTunes! Please Subscribe! When THC or delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol makes it's way to your brain via smoking or ingesting, lots of interesting things happen. But what exactly are some of the effects on your brain? + + + + + + + + Previous Episode: Where Did Marijuana Come From, And How Did It Spread?: + + + + + + + + Sources: The Science of Marijuana: How THC Affects the Brain: “Some people believe smoking marijuana carries no risks. But scientific research shows that there are risks, especially for teens. Marijuana affects a person’s judgment and can impair his or her ability to drive." What Is THC?: “THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol, is the chemical responsible for most of marijuana's psychological effects. It acts much like the cannabinoid chemicals made naturally by the body, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)." Smoking Too Much Cannabis Causes Dopamine Deficits In The Brain: “There’s no doubt that getting high can make you do some pretty dumb stuff, although the scientific community remains split over whether or not smoking too many joints causes lasting cognitive impairment." How Does Marijuana Produce Its Effects?: “THC and other cannabinoid chemicals in marijuana are similar to cannabinoid chemicals that naturally occur in the body. These endogenous cannabinoids (such as anandamide; see figure) function as neurotransmitters because they send chemical messages between nerve cells (neurons) throughout the nervous system." The Science of the Endocannabinoid System: How THC Affects the Brain and the Body: “After several decades of research, scientists studying the effects of marijuana made several important discoveries. Not only did they identify the active ingredient in marijuana, they also discovered where and how it works in the brain—via a new system they called the endocannabinoid (EC) system." Pot Science: Top Marijuana Findings of 2015: “Researchers who study marijuana made a number of findings in 2015, from learning about the health effects of using the drug frequently and recreationally, to figuring out which diseases and conditions are most likely to benefit from the substance's use." Is Eating Marijuana Really Riskier Than Smoking It?: “As more states are on the road to legalizing medical marijuana, a different pot conversation has heated up: The potential health risks of consuming marijuana-infused edibles." Legalized Pot: Smoke It or Eat It?: “The recreational use of marijuana is now legal in both Colorado and Washington, which means that (state) law-abiding Americans might soon have the choice to use a substance whose long-term health effects are still not well understood by science." Smoke vs. Snack: Why Edible Marijuana Is Stronger Than Smoking: “Eating marijuana tends to produce a stronger and much longer-lasting high than smoking it—one that is often scary to inexperienced users and can be disconcerting to regulars. This has created some controversy in Colorado, as cannabis neophytes consume newly legal “edibles” ranging from ganja brownies to pot-infused salsa." How Long Does Cannabis Stay In The Body After Smoking?: “It depends on how often and how much cannabis a person smokes and the potency (strength) of the cannabis. In general, the less cannabis that’s smoked, and the less often it’s smoked, the quicker it leaves the body." + + + + + + + + DNews Plus is built for enthusiastic science fans seeking out comprehensive conversations on the geeky topics they love. Host Trace Dominguez digs beyond the usual scope to deliver details, developments and opinions on advanced topics like AI, string theory and Mars exploration. DNews Plus is also offered as an audio podcast on iTunes. + + + + + + + + Trace Dominguez on Twitter DNews on Facebook DNews on Twitter + + + + + + + +