How does cannabis affect the neurochemistry of our brains? As it stands, we have very little information about the actual effects of cannabis on the brain. When it comes to dopamine signaling, scanty details exist about the role cannabis plays in this function of the brain. A recent study could shed light on this. According to researchers, there exists a dose-response relationship between high cannabis consumption and schizophrenia, a condition that’s associated with irregular synthesis and release of dopamine in the brain.
The study results come at a time when more states are legalizing cannabis. It coincides with the growing evidence that shows the risk of psychosis on the youth.
According to the study’s senior author Romina Mizrahi from the Toronto-based Center for Addiction and Mental Health, regular use of cannabis affects the cortical dopamine function, specifically the stress response, which is a critical aspect for youth in risk of psychosis.
She concludes that there’s a need for more research in order to investigate the effects of cannabis consumption on the brain’s neurochemistry, especially in populations that are at greater risk of psychosis.