Exercise cannabinoids increased sensitivity to cocaine in rats adolescent

The use of cannabinoids in adolescence
increases the sensitivity of the brain of rats to cocaine, say
the authors of the article in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. In addition, this experience leads to
large-scale biochemical changes in the brain, in particular, to reduce the number
receptors in the synapses, which may contribute to the formation of drug dependence.

It is considered that the use of recreational drugs such as alcohol, tobacco
and marijuana, especially in youth, increases the risk of transition to more “heavy” drugs
and development of drug addiction in the future. This hypothesis, known
as “the theory of the entrance gate” (gateway theory) has already received a lot of confirmations,
however, it is not known whether this pattern in the first place
social factors or biochemical changes in the brain.

Cannabinoids (the active substances of cannabis) in this list
the individual under suspicion, as are on endocannabinoid system
the body, which makes a contribution to the maturation of neural connections in the prefrontal
the cerebral cortex in adolescence. Modulation signals from endocannabinoids
receptors in the use of marijuana and synthetic analogues, likely, leads
to a breach of vzaimoraschetyi processes of excitation and inhibition, and can
to further result in the development of cognitive impairment and mental
disorders.

As for the “gate theory”, the use of cannabinoids in
adolescence can lead to increased sensitivity to others
psychoactive substances, in particular cocaine, as already demonstrated in rats, the researchers
from the Department of neurobiology, Columbia University (NY, USA) under
the guidance of Eric and Denise Kandel. In the new work, scientists together with colleagues
from Italy and Sweden found that the effect of a synthetic analogue of tetrahydrocannabinol
(THC) WIN 55212-2 in rats-teenagers (aged 38 to 60 days)
causes molecular changes in the prefrontal cortex (the cerebral cortex,
which is responsible for higher cognitive functions), explaining the observed sensitization
a lot of cocaine. Thus in adult animals was not observed any increase
sensitivity, no relevant changes in the brain.

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