cannabisnews.com: Parts of Marijuana May Fight Dementia 





Parts of Marijuana May Fight Dementia 
Posted by CN Staff on October 19, 2006 at 09:45:49 PT
By Misti Crane, The Columbus Dispatch 
Source: Columbus Dispatch
Ohio -- Give an old, confused rat some pot and it starts remembering things. An Ohio State University study shows that synthetic marijuana boosted memory and reduced brain inflammation in rats with brains altered to mimic the effects of Alzheimerís disease. Researcher Gary Wenk, a study co-author and Ohio State professor, shared his work at the Society for Neuroscience meeting in Atlanta this week.
The findings support the theory that anti-inflammatories might help fight the devastating disease and add to evidence that compounds in pot might be helpful in treating Alzheimerís, Wenk said. While research showing the benefits of marijuana in multiple sclerosis cases has been advancing significantly, work in Alzheimerís disease is still in its infancy. "We need much more evidence," Wenk said. The test animals in Wenkís study were given WIN, a synthetic drug similar to marijuana. Rats that had the drug and rats that didnít were given three days to repeatedly navigate a water maze with an escape route. On the fourth day, Wenk and his colleagues timed the rats. In general, old rats are bad at navigating mazes. But those given pot had a 50 percent improvement in memory and a 40 to 50 percent reduction in brain inflammation, Wenk said. "If we can cut their impairment in half, thatís amazing in an old animal," he said. "Old" in the rat world is about 24 months. Young ratsí memories also improved with the drug, but not as significantly. Neither marijuana nor the synthetic substitute is a good candidate for humans, Wenk said. "When youíre in your 60s, you donít want to get high, you just want to prevent dementia," he said. "Our challenge is to find a modified (drug) that is going to be an effective anti-inflammatory, but not make the patients high." Brain inflammation isnít the cause of Alzheimerís disease, but it appears to play a significant role, said Wenk, who has studied the disease for two decades. A recent study performed at the Scripps Research Institute in California found that THC, the active ingredient in marijuana, inhibits the formation of a brain plaque that is a hallmark of Alzheimerís disease. Researchers there said they were not advocating recreational drug use but had convincing evidence that marijuana had "remarkable" qualities compared with available medications. In another study, Spanish researchers also found that rats given synthetic marijuana performed better on mental-function tests, leading them to conclude that the drug worked to prevent inflammation and protect the brain. A handful of current treatments for Alzheimerís work by preventing the breakdown of a chemical thought to be important to memory and thinking. Another medication works by regulating glutamate, a brain chemical that can lead to braincell death when produced in excess. The two often are used in conjunction, but they are limited in their effectiveness, Wenk said. "Weíre focusing on trying to find ways to maybe attack the other parts of the disease," he said. An estimated 4.5 million Americans have Alzheimerís disease and that number could almost quadruple by 2050, according to the Alzheimerís Association. As for whether smoking marijuana has any benefit, thatís something that will take some time to sort out ó at least as long as it takes for the regular smokers of the 1960s and í70s to age and for scientists to sort out whether the pleasures of their youth brought good things in their golden years, Wenk said. "Yes, millions of people have used marijuana, but theyíre not old enough to be at risk." Note: Study: Drug reduces brain inflammation found in Alzheimerís. Newshawk: Paul Armentano Source: Columbus Dispatch (OH)Author: Misti Crane, The Columbus Dispatch Published: Thursday, October 19, 2006Copyright: 2006 The Columbus DispatchContact: letters dispatch.comWebsite: http://www.dispatch.com/ Related Articles:MJ's Active Ingredient May Improve Memoryhttp://cannabisnews.com/news/thread22268.shtmlMarijuana's Benefits Exploredhttp://cannabisnews.com/news/thread22265.shtmlPot Helps in Fighting Alzheimer's, Study Sayshttp://cannabisnews.com/news/thread22255.shtml 
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Comment #16 posted by Richard Zuckerman on October 22, 2006 at 13:59:17 PT:
THE BROAD PERSPECTIVE
YOU PEOPLE BETTER OPEN YOUR EYES TO A MORE OMINOUS THREAT ON OUR HORIZONS. The International Advocates For Health Freedom, 556 Boundary Bary Road, Point Roberts, WA, 98281,(800) 333-2553, has an article entitled "EURPOEAN DICTATORSHIP EXPOSED," www.nocodexgenocide.com/page/page/3780258.htm, on the efforts being made to align England with the European Union with Codex Alimentarius, which will ultimately arrive here in the United States, to require all vitamins, minerals, herbs, to be purchased from a doctor's prescription; It also entails erosion of individual freedoms! On page 36 of 67 of this Web article, they mention the plan to repeal trial by jury in England with Codex Alimentarius!!!! YOU PEOPLE BETTER FAMILIARIZE YOURSELF WITH THIS THREAT!!!Richard Paul Zuckerman, Post Office Box 159, Metuchen, N.J., 08840-0159, (Cell telephone number)(848) 250-8879.
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Comment #15 posted by FoM on October 22, 2006 at 12:17:06 PT
Snipped Source: Pot May Be Boost To Older Brains
http://www.nydailynews.com/front/story/463215p-389669c.html
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Comment #14 posted by Toker00 on October 20, 2006 at 09:06:31 PT
Sorry, your participation is REQUIRED here, whig.
Just pay attention to the subject matter more than the student. We are all learning here and I could use an adjustment now and then, too. I can take what I dish out.I wanted to say I am pleased with your blog. I appreciate your commitment to Truth and Spirituality. Now go back to chasing cats like a good pup...I mean young man! We'll be watching. :)Toke.
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Comment #13 posted by whig on October 20, 2006 at 08:22:00 PT
Toker00
I really don't think it's the fact that I'm "legal" but that I'm writing my own blog and maybe I can't participate here regularly and do that too. Different audiences, it makes for confusion.I'm open to suggestions.
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Comment #12 posted by Toker00 on October 20, 2006 at 03:14:24 PT
Whig
Who elected you post analyzer? I know very well what they were saying. Whig, I love ya man, but since you have become a "legal" user, you have become just a wee bit smug. You spend your time here not sharing your light within, but correcting what others say and think. What gives? You have an amazing mind and I value your mental offerings, but please try to refrain from your correction of others. You hold an enormous amount of respect here, but your judgemental tactics can annoy. PEACEWage peace on war. END CANNABIS PROHIBITION NOW!
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Comment #11 posted by whig on October 19, 2006 at 16:28:07 PT
charmed quark
That was an excellent explanation, thank you.
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Comment #10 posted by whig on October 19, 2006 at 16:26:05 PT
Toker00
I think their point is to claim that wanting to alter your consciousness in a positive way is immature.
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Comment #9 posted by charmed quark on October 19, 2006 at 15:40:17 PT
why the analog drug?
I wonder why they used the synthetic analog instead of THC? What was the advantage - I'm suspecting that they want a drug they can get their own patent on.In any case, anything that docks to certain cannabinoid receptors is going to get you "high". It's possible that the important medical effect may involve a receptor that doesn't get you high. If so, you could find a cannabinoid that docks with this recpetor but not the "high" recpetor.They didn't something similar with opiates. The drug Imodium that is used for diarrhea is an opiate that only docks with receptors in the gasointestinal tract. So you get the contipative effects of opium without the high.However, the important cannabinoid recpetors for dementia are in the brain. They've done a lot of research into cannabinoid receptors and I don't think there is a non-high brain receptor that would work. I assume they've already looked into the receptor associated with the non-high inducing CBD cannabinoid. So I think they're going to have to allow people to get high with this drug. Tsk, tsk.
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Comment #8 posted by FoM on October 19, 2006 at 15:02:54 PT
Toker00
This thing about people not wanting to get high when over 60 I wonder why many politicians get high on alcohol and most are over 60 if that's true. 
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Comment #7 posted by Toker00 on October 19, 2006 at 14:50:31 PT
They just love telling us what we want/don't want 
"When youíre in your 60s, you donít want to get high, you just want to prevent dementia," he said."Our challenge is to find a modified (drug) that is going to be an effective anti-inflammatory, but not make the patients high." Stop telling us what we would want in our 60s. I wanted to get high in my teens, twenties, thirties, forties, fifties, and I am quite sure I will still want to get high in my sixties, seventies, etc., if I can survive my so-called governments domestic and foreign policies between now and then.What challenge? What is the challenge?!? Try as you surely will, you will not improve on what God has given us. Already you have attempted to improve over God's creation and every time you try, people die. Capitalists profit, people die. You think you are capable of equaling or improving on Nature, but you only cause chaos and destruction. But ohhh, the PROFIT.Thank you God for Cannabis.Wage Peace on war. END CANNABIS PROHIBITION NOW!
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Comment #6 posted by FoM on October 19, 2006 at 12:32:36 PT
Whig
I don't know if the high is important but I think it is. People who have a serious illness need to be in a good frame of mind so they can get better. I believe the mood enhancement is what is the good medicine. It allows the body to heal easier. There again I am guessing. I am not a Doctor.
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Comment #5 posted by whig on October 19, 2006 at 12:24:02 PT
FoM
That "high" is your brain working.
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Comment #4 posted by FoM on October 19, 2006 at 12:05:04 PT
observer
I honestly believe it is the "high" part of Cannabis that is the most important medicine in the plant. Take the high out and it won't work as well I believe. That's sure not anything but my opinion.
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Comment #3 posted by observer on October 19, 2006 at 11:36:32 PT
Take Cannabis to Prevent and Reverse Dementia
"When youíre in your 60s, you donít want to get high, you just want to prevent dementia," he said.* Speak for yourself, doc.* Have we scientifically defined "get high" yet? * People "want to prevent dementia", yes, this part is true, at least.When I'm in my 60s (Lord willing) I hope to enjoy cannabis as much as ever. 
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Comment #2 posted by thestales on October 19, 2006 at 10:54:38 PT
without getting high?
"Our challenge is to find a modified (drug) that is going to be an effective anti-inflammatory, but not make the patients high." Why is it "they" are always referring to this as a BAD and horrendous thing? Realistically, How many people are using this medication and saying "my what a horrible side effect"? Why is everyone so insistent upon removing the euphoric side effects. Are we in a society where using a plant to feel better is so evil and bad?Apparently so.
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Comment #1 posted by FoM on October 19, 2006 at 09:48:33 PT
Old Confused Rat
The poor old confused rat I'm glad Cannabis helped him. Do rats smile? I couldn't resist saying that.
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