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Cannabinoid Receptors

Cannabinoid Receptors

Cannabis is the most commonly used drug in the United States and is being increasingly used as a self-medicating measure to counteract depression and/or anxiety. Individuals with mood and anxiety disorders have been found in previous studies to have lowered levels of endocannabinoids; hence, the introduction of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) activates the cannabinoid receptors, which offers relief for some of the symptoms of depression and anxiety. A new study published by Cell Reports and a research team at Vanderbilt University has found a way to replenish the levels of an endocannabinoid known as 2-Arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG) in the brain, which may offer some relief for those who find themselves depending on cannabis to relieve depressive symptoms. Dr. Sachin Patel, professor of psychiatry, molecular physiology, and biophysics, purposefully induced depressive and anxiety disorders in adult mice by deleting an enzyme...

Cannabis is the most commonly ...

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Neuroplasticity and THC

The role of neuroplasticity (i.e. the way that the brain develops over time) is widely recognized in healthy development, learning, memory, and recovery from brain damage.  It occurs in response to experiences and consists of neurogenesis (neuron creation) and neuro-degeneration (neuron death).  According to this study from Israel performed by Sackler Faculty of Medicine, there are a number of ways in which neuroplasticity is measured. Extracellular-signal-regulated kinases (ERKs) are protein enzymes that modify other proteins.  These protein enzymes are involved in regulating the processes involved with cell differentiation.  Researchers observed the amount of ERKs in the brain and found long-lasting differences within the hippocampus (involved in memory integration), frontal cortex (involved in planning, judging, personality, etc.), and cerebellum (involved in regulating balance, attention, etc.). cAMP response element-binding protein (CREB) is a protein that binds to the cAMP DNA sequence. It is...

The role of neuroplasticity (i...

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