Long term cannabis use linked to inflammation

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Long term cannabis users may have higher levels of a brain protein linked to chronic stress, anxiety and inflammation, according to international and Australian research. The researchers had expected the cannabis to have some anti-inflammatory effects, but instead they found long term cannabis users had higher levels of inflammatory markers in the blood. The long term cannabis users had higher levels of the brain protein known as a translocator protein; higher levels of this protein were linked with stress and anxiety and also with higher levels of an inflammatory marker in the blood of cannabis users.

Journal/conference: JAMA Psychiatry

Link to research (DOI): 10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2019.2516

Organisation/s: The University of New South Wales, Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, Canada

Funder: This study was funded by R01 supplement to grant MH100043 from the National Institutes of Health (Dr Mizrahi). Dr Weickert was supported by the New South Wales Ministry of Health, Office of Health and Medical Research. Dr Weickert was a recipient of Principal Research Fellowship #1117079 from the National Health and Medical Research Council (Australia). See paper for full conflict of interest disclosures

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