What's the Rush, RI?

Advocating for Evidence Based Marijuana Policy

Category Archives: Adolescents

Cannabis use associated with reduced dopamine release

Heavy cannabis use associated with reduced dopamine release in brain: Effect similar to other addictions.

Source:  Columbia University Medical Center: 
“Heavy cannabis use associated with reduced dopamine release in brain: Effect similar to other addictions.” ScienceDaily. 14 April 2016. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/04/160414214826.htm>.

ScienceDaily Summary:
Evidence of a compromised dopamine system has been found in heavy users of marijuana. Lower dopamine release was found in the striatum — a region of the brain that is involved in working memory, impulsive behavior, and attention. Previous studies have shown that addiction to other drugs of abuse, such as cocaine and heroin, have similar effects on dopamine release, but such evidence for cannabis was missing until now.

What’s the Rush, Research and Analysis Team Note:
Researchers also that in all participants lower dopamine release was associated with worse performance on learning and working memory tasks.  Heavy use was defined as daily for seven years beginning at age 16.

Journal Reference:
E van de Giessen, J J Weinstein, C M Cassidy, M Haney, Z Dong, R Ghazzaoui, N Ojeil, L S Kegeles, X Xu, N P Vadhan, N D Volkow, M Slifstein, A Abi-Dargham. Deficits in striatal dopamine release in cannabis dependenceMolecular Psychiatry, 2016; DOI: 10.1038/mp.2016.21

Biology of Addiction: Drugs and Alcohol Can Hijack Your Brain

Biology of Addiction:
Drugs and Alcohol Can Hijack Your Brain

Source:  National Institute of Health Newsletter October 2015

https://newsinhealth.nih.gov/issue/oct2015/feature1

“People with addiction lose control over their actions. They crave and seek out drugs, alcohol, or other substances no matter what the cost—even at the risk of damaging friendships, hurting family, or losing jobs. What is it about addiction that makes people behave in such destructive ways? And why is it so hard to quit?”

WTR-RI Research and Analysis Team Note:
This brief, readable and non-technical one page article is an excellent primer on the current state of knowledge on the any addictive substance gains control of the brain.  It is especially helpful in understanding the special vulnerability of adolescent brains (through age 25 to 28) to these substances. 

Teen marijuana use increasing again since 2009 but down overall since 1999.

Teen marijuana use down despite greater availability

Concerns abound over whether laws legalizing pot for medical, recreational use will get drug into hands of more young people

Source:
Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health. (2015, September 15). Teen marijuana use down despite greater availability: Concerns abound over whether laws legalizing pot for medical, recreational use will get drug into hands of more young people. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 16, 2015 from http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/09/150915141045.htm

ScienceDaily Summary:
Marijuana use among American high school students is significantly lower today than it was 15 years ago, despite the legalization in many states of marijuana for medical purposes, a move toward decriminalization of the drug and the approval of its recreational use in a handful of places, new research suggests.
Journal Reference:

  1. Renee M. Johnson, Brian Fairman, Tamika Gilreath, Ziming Xuan, Emily F. Rothman, Taylor Parnham, C. Debra M. Furr-Holden. Past 15-year trends in adolescent marijuana use: Differences by race/ethnicity and sexDrug and Alcohol Dependence, 2015; DOI: 10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2015.08.025

Daily marijuana use among U.S. college students highest since 1980

Daily marijuana use among U.S. college students highest since 1980

Source:
University of Michigan. (2015, September 1). Daily marijuana use among U.S. college students highest since 1980. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 2, 2015 from http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/09/150901095321.htm
ScienceDaily Summary:
Daily marijuana use among the nation’s college students is on the rise, surpassing daily cigarette smoking for the first time in 2014.

WTR-RI Research and Analysis Note:
This analysis of trends in the Monitoring the Future Study data includes trends in prescription   drug, opiates, cocaine, alcohol and several other abusive substance categories.  The full report is available online at: http://monitoringthefuture.org/pubs/monographs/mtf-vol2_2014.pdf


 

Teens with medical marijuana cards much likelier to say they’re addicted

Teens with medical marijuana cards much likelier to say they’re addicted, but few teens have them

Source:
University of Michigan. (2015, July 23). Teens with medical marijuana cards much likelier to say they’re addicted, but few teens have them. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 24, 2015 from http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/07/150723140207.htm
ScienceDaily Summary:
Teens using marijuana for medical reasons are 10 times more likely to say they are hooked on marijuana than youth who get marijuana illegally, a new study shows. The study is the first to report on a nationally representative sample of 4,394 high school seniors and their legal or illegal medical marijuana use as it relates to other drug use. In the study, 48 teens had medical marijuana cards, but 266 teens used medical marijuana without a card.

Journal Reference:

  1. Carol J. Boyd, Philip T. Veliz, Sean Esteban McCabe. Adolescents’ Use of Medical Marijuana: A Secondary Analysis of Monitoring the Future DataJournal of Adolescent Health, 2015; 57 (2): 241 DOI: 10.1016/j.jadohealth.2015.04.008

 

Gateway to Curiosity: Medical Marijuana Ads and Intention and Use During Middle School.

Adolescents who view medical marijuana ads more likely to use the drug, study finds

Source:
RAND Corporation. (2015, July 6). Adolescents who view medical marijuana ads more likely to use the drug, study finds. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 9, 2015 from http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/07/150706154858.htm

ScienceDaily Summary:
A new study raises questions about whether there is a need to revise prevention programming for youth as the availability, visibility and legal status of marijuana changes. The report found that adolescents who saw advertising for medical marijuana were more likely to either report using marijuana or say they planned to use the substance in the future.

Journal Reference:

  1. Elizabeth J. D’Amico, Jeremy N. V. Miles, Joan S. Tucker. Gateway to Curiosity: Medical Marijuana Ads and Intention and Use During Middle School.Psychology of Addictive Behaviors, 2015; DOI: 10.1037/adb0000094

In Cannabis Culture, the struggles that help us grow are avoided

Michael C. Cerullo: In Cannabis Culture, the struggles that help us grow are avoided.
The Providence Journal September 9, 2014

http://www.providencejournal.com/opinion/commentary/20140929-michael-c.-cerullo-in-cannabis-culture-the-struggles-that-help-us-grow-are-avoided.ece

Post-Legalization Denver CO MJ Adolescent Use Increases Significantly

WTR-RI Research and Analysis Team Note:

Data drawn from 2014 Colorado Healthy Kids and 2014 Monitoring the Future studies show substantial increases in post-legalization Denver Area last month youth use of marijuana when compared to national averages.  The table attached below shows differences in 8th grade use versus national average of approximately 350%; the ratios for 9th, 10th and 12th grades are approximately 40, 50 and 42 percent respectively.

Denver vs Nat’l Avg. Youth Use 2014 Table

Identifying teens at risk for hashish use

Identifying teens at risk for hashish use

Source:
New York University. (2015, April 13). Identifying teens at risk for hashish use. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 14, 2015 from http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/04/150413091645.htm
ScienceDaily Summary:
One in ten high school seniors has used hashish, a highly potent form of marijuana. Teens self-described as “hooked” on pot were twice as likely to use hashish.
Journal Reference:
Joseph J. Palamar, Lily Lee, Michael Weitzman. Prevalence and correlates of hashish use in a national sample of high school seniors in the United StatesThe American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse, 2015; 1 DOI: 10.3109/00952990.2015.1011745

Teens in child welfare system show higher drug abuse rate

Teens in child welfare system show higher drug abuse rate

Source:  (As reported in ScienceDaily, November 4, 2013)  Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs. (2013, November 4). Teens in child welfare system show higher drug abuse rate. ScienceDaily.  Retrieved May 22, 2014 fromwww.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/11/131104035404.htm

ScienceDaily Summary:

Teenagers in the child welfare system are at higher-than-average risk of abusing marijuana, inhalants and other drugs. However, the study also shows that parental involvement matters.

WTR-RI Research & Analysis Team Note:

This ScienceDaily article report that this study’s authors identified several significant differences in marijuana, alcohol and other drug use between socially vulnerable youth and youth in the general population.  They further note differences in drugs of choice, including the finding that “teens in the welfare system were more likely to have tried marijuana, inhalants or hard drugs – but not alcohol”.  ScienceDaily also observed that across all youth in the study both socially vulnerable and in the general population, “a key risk factor was delinquency”.  Implications for treatment and parenting support are also discussed.

Journal Reference:

Fettes, D. L., Aarons, G. A., & Green, A. E. Higher rates of adolescent substance use in child welfare versus community populations in the United StatesJournal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs, November 2013

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