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Cannabis & Health Health risks, anxiety from cannabis use.

 
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  #1  
Old 18-01-2013, 18:15
SunshineMusic SunshineMusic is offline
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What receptors in the brain does cannabis bind to?

Hello all! I hope this is the right forum to post on to find information on which receptor sites cannabis binds to after inhaling it's smoke.
My parents caught me smoking yesterday, and my dad expressed his worry/paranoia to me today that I cannot drive the car because I'm probably going to buy "dope" with it and then get the car taken away. I live in Massachusetts and will never buy more than 1/8 an ounce.
Anyways, my dad calls it "dope"...which to me is heroin....I do not use heroin.


So, getting to the point, I began to wonder exactly which receptors cannabis binds to....I know there are cannabinoid receptors, and there must be a few others. However, I do not remember dopamine being on the list of receptors....is it?


Hopefully I'm using these terms correctly. I wasn't the biggest fan of human anatomy haha.
Thanks!
Sunshine
  #2  
Old 18-01-2013, 18:29
Nitrogene Nitrogene is offline
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Re: What receptors in the brain does cannabis bind to?

It sounds like you're trying to justify your drug usage to your parents. Acting like a smart-ass will not solve the problem, in fact, it will make it worse. I apologise if I'm coming across as harsh, but it's just the way I am.

Take it like a man and tell them that you are sorry, and you're willing to quit. Admit that you were wrong even if it's hard to do, it's well worth it, trust me.

With the social stuff out of the way, onto some pharmacology. Cannabinoids will bind to receptors CB1 and CB2 and will not affect the mesolimbic reward system (dopamine receptors). It will nevertheless modify serotonin transmission, which is why it can become a psychedelic if used in large amounts, just like LSD, psilocin, and mescaline. Addiction to cannabis is mostly psychological, not physical, but can become significant with prolonged usage.
  #3  
Old 18-01-2013, 18:35
SunshineMusic SunshineMusic is offline
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Re: What receptors in the brain does cannabis bind to?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nitrogene View Post
It sounds like you're trying to justify your drug usage to your parents. Acting like a smart-ass will not solve the problem, in fact, it will make it worse. I apologise if I'm coming across as harsh, but it's just the way I am.

Take it like a man and tell them that you are sorry, and you're willing to quit. Admit that you were wrong even if it's hard to do, it's well worth it, trust me.

With the social stuff out of the way, onto some pharmacology. Cannabinoids will bind to receptors CB1 and CB2 and will not affect the mesolimbic reward system (dopamine receptors). It will nevertheless modify serotonin transmission, which is why it can become a psychedelic if used in large amounts, just like LSD, psilocin, and mescaline. Addiction to cannabis is mostly psychological, not physical, but can become significant with prolonged usage.
No sir, I was not trying to be smart-ass like at all. I accepted the punishment and didn't argue over the problem. I just posted my train of thoughts man:
Dad calls it dope -> to me, dope=heroin -> wondering if cannabis actually affecting dopamine receptors.
Haha I wasn't trying to be a smart ass. Sorry if I came off as one...I wouldn't say I'm trying to justify it and I probably won't even tell this information to my father. It is for my own knowledge.
And yes, I apologized.

Thank you for your information.

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polite and courteous response; for being calm and rational in your reply
  #4  
Old 18-01-2013, 18:47
Ghetto_Chem Ghetto_Chem is offline
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Re: What receptors in the brain does cannabis bind to?

Cannabis does have some effect on dopamine. Heres a few articles.

Cannabis induced dopamine release: an in-vivo SPECT study, Lakshmi N.P. Voruganti, Piotr Slomka, Pamela Zabel, Adel Mattar, A. George Awad, Institute of Medical Science, University of Toronto, ON, Canada.

In a research study aimed at examining the alterations in dopaminergic function in schizophrenia, the authors identified a surreptitious case scenario which provided new insights into the subjective and neurochemical effects of cannabis. A 38-year-old drug-free schizophrenic patient took part in a single photon emission computerized tomographic (SPECT) study of the brain, and smoked cannabis secretively during a pause in the course of an imaging session. Cannabis had an immediate calming effect, followed by a worsening of psychotic symptoms a few hours later. A comparison of the two sets of images, obtained before and immediately after smoking cannabis, indicated a 20% decrease in the striatal dopamine D2 receptor binding ratio, suggestive of increased synaptic dopaminergic activity. This observation offers a plausible biological explanation for the psychotogenic effects of cannabis in vulnerable individuals, and also raises speculations about an interaction between cannabinoid and dopaminergic systems in the brain reward pathways.

Cannabinoids excite dopamine neurons in the ventral tegmentum and substantia nigra, French, Edward D, Dillon, Kathryn, Wu, Xiaofang.

EXTRACELLULAR recordings were used to determine the effects of cannabinoids on the activity of dopamine neurons within the ventral tegmental area (VTA) and substantia nigra pars compacta (SNC). Systemic administration of the natural psychoactive cannabinoid Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ9-THC) and the synthetic cannabimimetic aminoalkylindole WIN 55,212-2 produced dose-dependent increases in firing rate and burst firing in both neuronal populations. These effects appear to be specific as the non-psychoactive cannabidiol and the inactive enantiomer WIN 55,212-3 failed to alter either parameter of neuronal excitability. Furthermore, dopamine neurons in the VTA were more sensitive than those in the SNC to the stimulatory actions of Δ9-THC. These results may provide a mechanism by which psychoactive cannabinoids increase extracellular dopa-mine levels in mesolimbic and striatal tissues, and thereby contribute to the reinforcing effects of marijuana.

---------------------------------

In other words, cannabis probably does effect dopamine in some way, I always thought it did by its effects. Sativa with its high THC content low CBD content, always gives a very energizing high that can sometimes wake me up for hours. Whereas Indica does not provide that same waking effect, the above study helps prove this as the THC had some effect on dopamine while the CBD and another inactive enantiomer failed to have the same effect.

Now with all that said, Nitrogene is right in that none of this matters when it comes to talking to your parents. Parents, even if they are wrong, will usually be very stubborn about their beliefs and won't be swayed by the research of a teenage "drug user". I tried the same thing when my mom found out about me, we even had a dinner one night where we argued for hours about it. In the end I just gave up and realized that she just prefers if I keep that to myself.

And I also agree with you OP, when people use the word "dope" to refer to buds, it just doesn't sound right cuz younger generations know dope to be heroin. Where as older generations used the word dope for weed more often. My dad used to say it but has since got hip lol.

-GC

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Cited source, personal experience. Perfect. Thank you!

Last edited by Ghetto_Chem; 18-01-2013 at 18:58.
  #5  
Old 18-01-2013, 21:37
Nitrogene Nitrogene is offline
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Re: What receptors in the brain does cannabis bind to?

I apologise for misjudging the situation. I really appreciate the fact that your prime motivation is learning, a very edifying choice.

With that said, here's what the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime has to say about the subject:

"The active ingredient in cannabis, delta‐9‐tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), is only found
in small portions of the cannabis plant, in the flowering tops and in some of the
leaves. THC stimulates cannabinoid receptors (CBRs), located on the surface of
neurons, to produce psychoactive effects. CBRs are part of the endocannabinoid
system, a communication network in the brain that plays a role in neural
development and function. CBRs are typically activated by a naturally occurring
neurotransmitter, anandamide. THC mimics anandamide, binding with the CBRs and
activating the neurons, but the effects of THC are more potent and longer acting
than the endogenous neurotransmitter.

CBRs are widely distributed in the brain, but are particularly prevalent in the hippocampus, cerebellum, prefrontal cortex, and amygdala – brain regions involved in pleasure, cognition, concentration, memory, reward, pain perception, and motor coordination. CBR receptor activation regulates
the release of multiple neurotransmitters, including noradrenaline, GABA, serotonin,
and dopamine. Animal studies have indicated that THC exposure increases the
release of noradrenaline, causing anxiety‐like behavior in rodents. The rewarding effects of cannabis may be due to an increase of serotonin,while GABA is responsible for memory deficits promoted by THC, as well as stress."

In a nutshell, the release of serotonin is more relevant than the release of dopamine when studying the addiction potential of cannabis. As GhettoChem said, the older generation tends to call it dope because of the "Just Say No" campaign of the 80s and 90s.

I don't quite agree with their final conjecture that the release of GABA correlates with increased stress, otherwise by taking alcohol, you wouldn't be easing stress, you'd be making it worse.
  #6  
Old 19-01-2013, 00:18
Pain Hurts Pain Hurts is offline
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Re: What receptors in the brain does cannabis bind to?

maybe this will help?

http://thebrain.mcgill.ca/flash/i/i_...s.html#drogues

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Useful link. Thank you.

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