Wednesday, June 27, 2018

There's Hope for Old Stoners

If you're old enough, you may come to like your prime minister a lot more on October 17. That's when the recreational use of marihuana will become legal in Canada.

If you're old enough as in "old" enough.

Researchers in Germany have found that an active ingredient unique to cannabis produces some remarkable effects on the minds of really old mice.  After a few weeks of low dose THC, Methuselah mice, 16 to 18 months old, were mentally rejuvenated.
We implanted so-called osmotic mini-pumps—tiny pumps that we put under the skin of these mice—and they constantly released the drug that we wanted to administer. And then, after four weeks, we stopped the delivery, waited for a week, and then afterwards, there were several tests on learning and memory.

A very simple test, for example, is that mouse needs to learn how to find a hidden platform. And mice learn this typically within a few days—actually, they're quite good. 
And what we observed was quite staggering. They remembered where the platform was just as well as a young animal—and also, their working memory was absolutely indistinguishable. Then we tested the animals in many different paradigms that also test memory function, and we basically couldn't distinguish [between] the old mice and young mice. These [old mice] were between 12 and 18 months, which is very old for a mouse.
But there's a hitch. There's always a hitch. The mental improvement was only found in old mice.
Cannabis is a drug that has opposite effect on young animals as opposed to old animals. It worsens memory in young mice. It also worsens memory in young humans.
So, how does it work on geezers? It reverses your endocannabinoid decline, whatever that is.

We had previously observed that the endocannabinoid tone declines as we age, so the levels of endogenous substances decrease in older individuals. And this means they're present inside our bodies to begin with. So what the plant compound does is just mimic our endogenous compounds. What we were attempting to do is to normalize the level, or bring it back to the level of young individuals.


Rural said...

Hmmmm, never tried wackybacky.... that I remember....perhaps thats my problem?

Lorne said...

Enough to give an old guy like me some hope, Mound. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Always was amazed by how so called scientist tweaked the study to produce the desired effect .
The key statement " After a few weeks of low dose THC" . Who use low dose ?

Toby said...

Anonymous Anonymous asked, "Who use low dose ?"

Did you just explain your confusing posts here?

The Mound of Sound said...

Rural, you could be right. I know I'm planning on giving it a shot. I don't know anyone my age who hasn't experienced some memory decline even if it is intermittent.

Blame it on your endocannabinoids.

The Mound of Sound said...

Lorne, you're very welcome. Have you looked into "vapes"?

The Mound of Sound said...

Toby, well put. I was having the same issue with his incoherence.

Anonymous said...

Anyone trying to improve memory and cognition needs to try vaping with nicotine.
It is proven by dozens of studies to work, in old and young animals.
Use of THC to IMPROVE memory is sketchy at best.

The Mound of Sound said...

So let me get this right. We have a researcher from a recognized university whose institute has released a research paper based on experimentation and observation, presumably peer reviewed, one one hand

- and a contradictory yet totally unsubstantiated opinion from an anonymouse on the other hand.

Decisions, decisions. Whom to believe?

Anonymous said...

Let's get a couple things straight, Mound.
Anonymouse is... a peer reviewed researcher. My bet is on nicotine, as this substance is backed by the decades of a rock solid research, not on (apparently)one paper. I will read original publication in question and issue a retraction if warranted. And for now, why not check a wiki page on nicotine? Need more? use google scholar or visit UBC library.

rww said...

With so many people named Anonymous I never know which ones to believe.

Deacon Jester said...

No one gives a shit anonymouse. You're just another asshole encountered along the way.

Lorne said...

A friend of mine, a longtime devotee of the herb, swears by Namaste vaporizers, Mound. He recommends the DaVinci.

The Mound of Sound said...

What does nicotine have to do with endocannabinoids? I've seen nothing suggesting any connection. Yet there is a mountain of research, most of it well over my head, on the endocannabinoid system and its role in maintaining health. The research referenced in this article it turns out is less novel than it appears.

Here, to pique your interest, is a "starter" paper from the US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.

The Mound of Sound said...

To show my pro-nicotine anonymice, I did look at some literature and it appears to have some potential health benefits. However it also has some major drawbacks. Among them it raises blood pressure and heart rate, narrows arteries and hardens artery walls, increases the risk of blood clots, stresses the heart and increases the risk of heart attack and strokes.

"Other than that, Mrs. Lincoln, what did you think of the play?"