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Medical Marijuana and Aging

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Medical Marijuana and Aging…..

 

 

The use of the U.S.'s most popular illicit drug is growing among retirees as the massive generation of baby boomers who came of age in the 1960s and '70s grow older.
The number of people aged 50 and older reporting marijuana use in the prior year went up from 1.9 percent to 2.9 percent from 2002 to 2008, according to surveys from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.
The rise was most dramatic among 55- to 59-year-olds, whose reported marijuana use more than tripled from 1.6 percent in 2002 to 5.1 percent.
Observers expect further increases as 78 million boomers born between 1945 and 1964 age. For many boomers, the drug never held the stigma it did for previous generations, and they tried it decades ago.
Some have used it ever since, while others are revisiting the habit in retirement, either for recreation or as a way to cope with the aches and pains of aging.
Siegel walks with a cane and has arthritis in her back and legs. She finds marijuana has helped her sleep better than pills ever did. And she can't figure out why everyone her age isn't sharing a joint, too.  

 

"They're missing a lot of fun and a lot of relief," she said.


Relieves problems of aging
 

Politically, advocates for legalizing marijuana say the number of older users could represent an important shift in their decades-long push to change U.S. laws.
"For the longest time, our political opponents were older Americans who were not familiar with marijuana and had lived through the 'Reefer Madness' mentality and they considered marijuana a very dangerous drug," said Keith Stroup, the founder and lawyer of NORML, a marijuana advocacy group.
When you think about people who are 50 and older you don't generally think of them as using illicit drugs — the occasional Hunter Thompson or the kind of hippie dippie guy that gets a lot of press maybe," he said. "As a nation, it's important to us to say, 'It's not just young people using drugs it's older people using drugs.'"
In conversations, older marijuana users often say they smoke in less social settings than when they were younger, frequently preferring to enjoy the drug privately. They say the quality (and price) of the drug has increased substantially since their youth and they aren't as paranoid about using it.
While humans are living longer, the prevalence of dementia is also on the rise. And many researchers believe factors such as stress, accumulation of toxic waste products as well as inflammation accelerate aging in the brain.
However, scientists are also learning that certain mechanisms can protect the brain from deterioration and even repair defective structures.
For example, in a study of mice, European researchers have recently discovered a previously unknown function of the cannabinoid-1 receptor (CB1). A receptor is a protein that can bind to other substances, triggering a chain of signals.
Cannabinoids such as THC — the active agent in marijuana — and endocannabinoids formed by the body bind to the CB1 receptors.
The existence of this receptor is also the reason for the intoxicating effect of hashish and marijuana and perhaps the upbeat feeling of a runner’s high after intense exercise.
Not only does the CB1 receptor have an addictive potential, but it also plays a role in the degeneration of the brain.
“If we switch off the receptor using gene technology, mouse brains age much faster,” said Önder Albayram, a doctoral student at the Institute of Molecular Psychiatry at the University of Bonn in Germany and principal author of the study. “This means that the CB1 signal system has a protective effect for nerve cells.”
The researchers studied mice in different age categories – young six-week-old animals, middle-aged ones at five months, and those of an advanced age at 12 months.
The animals had to master various tasks used to assess the ability to learn and remember – first, they had to find a submerged platform in the pool. Once the mice knew its location, the platform was moved, and the animals had to find it again.
The animals in which the CB1 receptor had been switched off by genetic engineering (the “knockout” mice) clearly differed from the other group.
“The knock-out mice showed clearly diminished learning and memory capacity,” Albayram said. Thus, animals that did not have the receptor were less successful in their search for the platform. They also showed a clear loss of nerve cells in the hippocampus, a brain structure critical to forming and storing memories.
Furthermore, researchers found inflammation processes in the brain and as the mice advanced in age, the degenerative processes became increasingly noticeable.
The animals with the intact CB1 receptor, to the contrary, did clearly better with regard to their learning and memory capabilities, as well as the health of their nerve cells.
The processes in the mouse brains have a surprising number of parallels with age-related changes in human brains, Albayram said. “So the endocannabinoid system may also present a protective mechanism in the aging of the human brain.”
Nevertheless, additional research is required to better understand the mechanism by which CB1 receptors protect the brain from inflammation processes. Then, based on these signal chains, it might be possible to develop substances for new drug therapies, he said.


Now, whether they resume the habit of smoking or whether they simply understand that it's no big deal and that it shouldn't be a crime, in large numbers they're on our side of the issue."
Each night, 66-year-old Stroup says he sits down to the evening news, pours himself a glass of wine and rolls a joint. He's used the drug since he first went to university, but many older adults are revisiting marijuana after years away.
"The kids are grown, they're out of school, you've got time on your hands and frankly it's a time when you can really enjoy marijuana," Stroup said. "Food tastes better, music sounds better, sex is more enjoyable."
The drug is credited with relieving many problems of aging: aches and pains, glaucoma, macular degeneration, and so on. Patients in 14 states enjoy medical marijuana laws, but those elsewhere buy or grow the drug illegally to ease their conditions.
Among them is Perry Parks, 67, of North Carolina, a retired Army pilot who suffered crippling pain from degenerative disc disease and arthritis. He had tried all sorts of drugs, from Vioxx to epidural steroids, but found little success. About two years ago he turned to marijuana, which he first had tried in college, and was amazed how well it worked for the pain.
"I realized I could get by without the narcotics," Parks said. "I am essentially pain free."




Marijuana is "anti-aging" and "curative" drug.


Cannabis and cannabinoids represent a promising treatment which can reduce arthritic pain and inflammation and positively modulate bone growth and maintenance. It has already been demonstrated that cannabinoids can effectively treat some types of arthritic pain, but recent evidence suggests that the cannabinoids are also important for bone growth and maintenance throughout life.
The importance of cannabinoids in bone health has been established in trans genic mice that are missing either the CB1 or CB2 receptor. These mice develop osteoporosis much more quickly than normal or wild mice. Research has recently shown that mice missing both cannabinoid receptors have extremely weak bones, a condition that underlies osteoporosis and osteoarthritis pathology.
Based on genetic screening techniques, a correlation between cannabinoids and bone is emerging in humans as well. Three studies in three distinct ethnic groups have demonstrated that mutations in the type 2 cannabinoid receptor correlate to bone diseases. One study even showed that hand bone strength weakness is very well correlated with dysfunctional/mutant CB2 receptors.
Arthritis of any type can be an extremely painful and debilitating condition that presents challenges for pain management. The use of cannabis as a treatment for musclo-skeletal pain in western medicine dates to the 1700s.  Evidence from recent research suggests that cannabis-based therapies are effective in the treatment of arthritis and the other rheumatic and degenerative hip, joint and connective tissue disorders. Since these are frequently extremely painful conditions, the well-documented analgesic properties of cannabis make it useful in treating the pain associated with arthritis, both on its own and as an adjunct therapy that substantially enhances the efficacy of opioid painkillers.
Cannabis has also been shown to have powerful immune-modulation and antiinflammatory properties,  suggesting that it could play a role not just in symptom management but treatment of arthritis. In fact, one of the earliest records of medical use of cannabis, a Chinese text dating from ca. 2000 BC, notes that cannabis "undoes rheumatism," suggesting its anti-inflammatory and immune modulating effects were known even then.


CANNABIS AND AGING


Cannabis has been found to help many patients suffering from conditions that afflict older patients, including arthritis, chronic pain, cancer, Alzheimer's disease, diabetes, and spasticity associated with such diseases as Parkinson's.
A Canadian court heard Thursday that cannabis is safer than aspirin and can restore the balance in people's bodies to help fight illness.

That was the testimony of Dr. Robert Melamede, an associate professor at the University of Colorado, who was brought in by the defense team for the four men accused in the Holy Smoke Culture Shop drug trafficking case taking place in Nelson this week.

Melamede's testimony comes on the second day of what is supposed to be a week-long trial. In a lengthy scientific explanation, the U.S. expert told the court that the human body produces marijuana-like compounds, or endocannabinoids, which act as a "lubricant" for food produced chemicals called "free radicals" that are very reactive and can cause an imbalance in the body. "You can look at the harm caused by free radicals as biological friction or biological rust and the endocannabinoid system minimizes the impact of that and directly acts as an antioxidant as well as modifying the biochemistry in a way that minimizes the impacts," said Melamede outside court Thursday, likening endocannabinoids to humans like oil is to cars. He said if you don't have lubrication in your car, your car breaks. In the human body, the damage comes in the form of age-related diseases.

"I'm saying what science has now shown is that marijuana and cannabinoids are effective anti-aging agents which means that they are effective in minimizing the onset and the severity of age-related illnesses which include cognitive dysfunction things like Alzheimers, cardiovascular disease be it heart attacks, strokes, or clogged arteries," he said.

But while it does not work for every one, cannabis can also help those people with auto-immune diseases and cancer.

Melamede explained that you would have to take 40,000 times the therapeutic dose before causing harm to your body. But the therapeutic index for aspirin is 15 to one.

"It's extremely safe," said Melamede of marijuana, noting the overdose amount would equal 40,000 joints. 

 

Anti-Aging Properties


And it’s also a system that can be heightened by the use of marijuana, he said, which he called “an essential nutrient” that provides anti-aging properties by “smoothing out” free radicals in the body, which contribute to a host of diseases.

Apart from the therapeutic use of marijuana by those like Falco, or others with a wasting disease, cancer or AIDS, Melamede touted the use of marijuana — “a puff or two a day” — by healthy people as a way to live a longer, more healthful life.

Marijuana — and more specifically the cannabinoids in it — staves off inflammation, delays the onset of auto-immune diseases, inhibits the formation of Alzheimer’s disease and can help treat or even cure some types of cancer, he said.

“Cannabinoids have curative or at least palliative properties,” Melamede said.

 

“It should be the first line of treatment.”

 

A Canadian court heard Thursday that cannabis is safer than aspirin and can restore the balance in people's bodies to help fight illness.

That was the testimony of Dr. Robert Melamede, an associate professor at the University of Colorado, who was brought in by the defense team for the four men accused in the Holy Smoke Culture Shop drug trafficking case taking place in Nelson this week.

Melamede's testimony comes on the second day of what is supposed to be a week-long trial. In a lengthy scientific explanation, the U.S. expert told the court that the human body produces marijuana-like compounds, or endocannabinoids, which act as a "lubricant" for food produced chemicals called "free radicals" that are very reactive and can cause an imbalance in the body. "You can look at the harm caused by free radicals as biological friction or biological rust and the endocannabinoid system minimizes the impact of that and directly acts as an antioxidant as well as modifying the biochemistry in a way that minimizes the impacts," said Melamede outside court Thursday, likening endocannabinoids to humans like oil is to cars. He said if you don't have lubrication in your car, your car breaks. In the human body, the damage comes in the form of age-related diseases.

"I'm saying what science has now shown is that marijuana and cannabinoids are effective anti-aging agents which means that they are effective in minimizing the onset and the severity of age-related illnesses which include cognitive dysfunction things like Alzheimers, cardiovascular disease be it heart attacks, strokes, or clogged arteries," he said.

 

 


Testimonials:

 

does anyone here knows about the relationship of aging and mj?... i started smoking when i was 13 yrsold...till i was in college.. when i was about 24 or 25 yrs old i stopped smoking ... now im back again smoking mj... noticed that my skin improved a lot even my face kinda looked in my 20s again.. and i noticed that some of the young girls are kinda looking at me again... hey im already39 and those 18 yr olds are kinda noticing me weird but true am i just paranoid or hallucinating?... do they have research on this stuff?

 

Hemp seed oil and it's anti-aging properties.
 

Hemp seed oil is used for the great effect it has on moisturizing and hydrating the skin, while bringing a host of other benefits such as recompensing for lower ceramide levels in the skin and thereby reducing the appearance of wrinkles.
Hemp seed oil is made from the hemp plant - Cannabis Sativa .  The oil used in cosmetics and skincare products does NOT contain the psychoactive THC ingredient and is therefore not subject to any legal restriction.
It contains 50 - 60 % linoleic (LA) and 19% linolenic (LNA) acids, as well as antioxidants in the form of vitamin E and carotene. Phytosterols, phospholipids, as well as a number of minerals, including calcium, magnesium, sulfur, potassium and phosphorus are also present.
The profile of the essential fatty acids found in it closely resembles the skin's natural lipids, and it therefore neutralizes the effects of dehydration, and protects against a dry skin.


The essential fatty acid - linoleic - found in this oil, as well as its metabolite, gamma-linolenic acid, have proven to have very beneficial therapeutic effects on the skin. These fatty acids contain glycerides, sterols and phospholipids.
Fatty acids occur naturally in the skin and are helpful in protection against oxidative damage. Fatty acids can help with supplementation of the skin's intercellular matrix.


Youthful, properly functioning, skin contains ceramides, but with age the level of ceramides decreases and the polyunsaturated fatty acids that make the ceramides flexible are replaced by less saturated fatty acids. This action, coupled to the slower metabolism of the skin, aids in wrinkle formation and skin aging.
The topical use of fatty acids has an anti-inflammatory action on the skin and also recompenses for the lower ceramide levels, thereby reducing the appearance of wrinkles.


Apart from all of this, the oil also contains around 23% protein and all nine essential amino acids, as well as two sulfur-containing amino acids - methionine and cystine - which are normally found in low quantities in vegetable proteins.
Some studies have also shown that topically applied omega-6 gamma-linolenic acid and omega-6 linoleic acid, both found in good quantities in hemp seed oil, are effective in the therapeutic treatment of acne skin, since it helps in inhibiting the inflammation and thereby preventing or alleviating "breakouts".
As light and finely textured oils, such as hemp seed oil, condition and provide moisture to the skin, they are often also included in facial washes - - to prevent dehydration and de-fatting of the skin. The very high levels of essential fatty acid found in this oil makes it an ideal candidate for use in skin washes and cleansers.


The main economic importance of hemp is the fiber, and hemp is often used for rope making, but in history, the seed, either as a paste or as a liniment, was used in folk medicine as a remedy for tumors and cancerous ulcers.


A quick Google search turns up a myriad of positive anecdotal evidence regarding hemp oil. Most of the praise involves the substance’s ability to heal eczema and other dry or itchy skin issues. It has also been touted on several message boards as a savior for those with rosacea, sensitive or inflamed skin. Because hemp oil is rich in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, it is a great emollient for hair (as well as a fantastic health booster) and may be particularly helpful in the dry, winter months. The high protein content of hemp oil will also improve hair’s condition, as well as help nail growth and strength.
Though there certainly isn’t enough of it, there is some research that indicates hemp oil’s effectiveness; at the very least, the studies prove that the oil should be further examined. One study found that topical application of gamma-linolenic acid creams to areas of the skin suffering from pruritus, or itch, helped alleviate the itch as opposed to a placebo cream. GLA is a fatty acid and one if its primary sources is hemp seed oil.
A twenty-week randomized, single-blind crossover study found that in comparison to olive oil, “dietary hempseed oil caused significant changes in plasma fatty acid profiles and improved clinical symptoms of atopic dermatitis. It is suggested that these improvements resulted from the balanced and abundant supply of [polyunsaturated fatty acids] in this hempseed oil.”


Few natural food sources have withered as much confusion, controversy and misinformation (and lack of information) as hemp – which is unfortunate, and even ironic, given that it is

one of the world’s most perfect foods.


Actually, it goes far beyond food, as this super-plant has also been used for centuries as a wonderful source of fibers for clothing and accessories, soaps and oils, and much more. It's even rumored to be the world's "oldest food" consumed by modern man.
But even despite the recent hemp boom which has hit the nutrition & supplements world over the last year, few still know just how impressive this plant is, or that it may qualify as one of the best brain health-boosting & anti-aging foods on the planet.
Have you been seeing more and more health foods, snacks, nutrition bars, oils, breads and other products on the shelves with the word “hemp!” on the packaging?  Protein powder that “now includes hemp greens!”, cereals with hemp seeds, hemp drink mixes, hemp bathing oils and soaps?   Thanks to a recent explosion of legal hemp growing largely based in Canada (hemp has been legal to grow in Canada since 1998), a version of this plant – and more specifically, the seeds of the plant, has become what many believe to be the next revolution in health foods, based on its rather staggering nutritional profile.

The hemp available today in the U.S., Canada, Europe, Australia and UK is based on a naturally selected strain of the plant, cannabis sativa, which produces effectively no measurable THC, the psychoactive element in marijuana.   By law, this Canadian-grown hemp must contain less than .01% THC.
The nutritional profile of hemp is perhaps the biggest reason for its recent (and historical) praise as one of nature’s truly perfect foods: high in protein, rich in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids (with an uncannily perfect ratio of omega-6-to-omega-3, almost too good to be true), rich in chlorophyll and the green plant phytonutrients like the best green leafy vegetables possess, low in carbs/sugars, high in fiber.

- Shelled hemp seed contains 33 percent pure digestible protein and is rich in iron and vitamin E as well as omega-3 and GLA. A recent report funded by the Canadian government states that hemp protein is comprised of 66 percent high-quality edistin protein, and that hempseed contains the highest percentage of this of any plant source. Hemp also contains three times the vitamin E contained in flax.
- Good fats: while hemp seed is an excellent source of protein that also contains a variety of vitamins and minerals, its most important feature is that it provides both essential fatty acids (EFAs) needed in the human diet–linoleic (omega-6 fatty acid) and alpha-linolenic acid (omega-3). These fats are "essential" because they cannot be manufactured in the body and so must be consumed as food. Hemp has an omega-6/omega-3 ratio of 3.38, which is closest to the optimum 4.0 average recommended by the World Health Organization for the human diet.
- Hemp for Heart Health: EFAs are essential for the health of the heart. Numerous studies showthat substituting healthy polyunsaturated fats such as hemp for saturated fats can reduce the risk of sudden cardiac arrest and fatal cardiac arrhythmia, as well as reduce blood cholesterol levels and decrease the cellular buildup in arteries associated with atherosclerosis. Hemp also contains phytosterols, which have been shown to reduce total blood cholesterol by an average of 10 percent and low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol by an average of 13 percent.
- Brain health: because EFAs make up a large portion of the brain, hemp is especially beneficial for brain health, particularly memory function. Membrane loss of EFAs has been found in such disorders as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases. Research has shown that a diet with a proper balance of omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acids–such as in hemp oil–may help delay or reduce the neurological effects of these diseases and improve quality of life.
- Skin health: The critical importance of EFAs for healthy skin makes hemp seed oil a highly effective skin care and cosmetic product. Its lipid constituents allow it to permeate through the skin and nourish skin cells directly. For this reason, hemp oil is beneficial for skin conditions such as eczema or psoriasis. For the health of skin and hair, nourishing and balancing hemp oil is now added to a multitude of soaps, shampoos, skin lotions, lip balms, conditioners and other natural skin-care products.
In summary, hemp is an incredible brain health & anti-aging nutritional powerhouse.

 

Articles About Medical Marijuana and Aging

 

Posted on 2006-01-23 08:52:52 in Medical Marijuana

Marijuana -- or more specifically its active ingredient, tetrahydrocannabinol -- has a well-documented tendency to stimulate hunger. And while scientists have traced this property to cannabinoid receptors in the brain, they have had little understanding of the neural circuitry underlying this effect.

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University Of Saskatchewan Research Suggests Marijuana Analogue Stimulates Brain Cell Growth
Posted on 2005-10-24 08:42:47 in Medical Marijuana |
A synthetic substance similar to ones found in marijuana stimulates cell growth in regions of the brain associated with anxiety and depression, pointing the way for new treatments for these diseases, according to University of Saskatchewan medical research published today in The Journal of Clinical Investigation.

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Good News For The Medical Marijuana Movement: pot Proliferates Brain Cells And Boosts Mood
Posted on 2005-10-24 08:36:57 in Medical Marijuana |
Most drugs of abuse decrease the generation of new neurons in the brain, but the effects of marijuana on this process, called neurogenesis, had not been clear. In a JCI paper researchers show that a potent and synthetic cannabinoid promotes neurogenesis. This drug also exerts anti-anxiety and antidepressant-like effects. Cannabinoids are perhaps the only illicit drug that can enhance adult neurogenesis and subsequently modify behavior.

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Cannabis-based drugs might relieve bowel disease (Reuters)
Posted on 2005-08-19 06:22:06 in Medical Marijuana |
Reuters - Derivatives of the active compound in cannabis -- cannabinoids -- may have the potential for treating inflammatory bowel diseases like Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis, UK researchers report.

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Posted on 2004-12-17 03:34:05 in Medical Marijuana |
A first-of-its-kind study of safety issues surrounding the medical use of cannabis has just been launched. Known as the COMPASS study (Cannabis for the management of pain: assessment of safety study), the research initiative will follow 1400 chronic pain patients, 350 of whom use cannabis as part of their pain management strategy, for a one-year period.

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Marijuana As Medicine - Prohibition kills the patient
Posted on 2004-07-28 14:35:35 in Medical Marijuana |
Marijuana has been used as medicine for centuries, even millennia, research has shown that THC, the active ingredient in the herb, has anti-cancer properties, but courts in the US (and elsewhere) say no. Patients who use marijuana to ease pain or cure an illness are arrested, humiliated, bankrupted and some die as a consequence.

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Anti-Aging/Medical Marijuana Articles:

 

Marijuana Eases Debilitating Symptoms of Debilitating Autoimmune Disease
Posted on 2009-12-09 06:00:00 in Autoimmune | Medical Marijuana |
Methodical investigation reveals therapeutic benefits of cannabinoid therapy in relieving symptoms of muscular sclerosis (MS).

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THC initiates brain cancer cells to destroy themselves
Posted on 2009-05-20 16:16:20 in Cancer | Longevity and Age Management | Medical Marijuana |
Spanish researchers have discovered that the active ingredient in marijuana – delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) – promotes the death of brain cancer cells.

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Posted on 2009-02-27 14:14:21 in Drug Trends | Longevity and Age Management | Medical Marijuana |
U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder is delivering on President Obama's campaign pledge to give states control over making their own rules on the use of marijuana for medical purposes. Marijuana compounds may benefit aging brain.

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Posted on 2008-11-20 05:01:01 in Brain and Mental Performance | Medical Marijuana |
Researchers at Ohio State University say that they have found evidence suggesting that compounds found in the recreational drug marijuana may benefit the aging brain by reducing inflammation and stimulating the growth of new brain cells.

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Body's Own 'Cannabis (Marijuana)' Is Good For The Skin, Scientists Find
Posted on 2008-07-14 13:44:33 in Longevity and Age Management | Medical Marijuana | Skin-Hair |
Scientists from Hungary, Germany and the U.K. have discovered that our own body not only makes chemical compounds similar to the active ingredient in marijuana (THC), but these play an important part in maintaining healthy skin.

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Latest Buzz: Marijuana May Slow Progression Of Alzheimer's Disease
Posted on 2006-11-09 08:45:22 in Medical Marijuana |
New evidence in rats suggests that marijuana may contain compounds that slow the memory loss associated with Alzheimer's disease. Marijuana has strong anti-inflammatory effects, and many researchers believe that there is a compelling link between chronic inflammation and the progression of Alzheimer's, said Gary Wenk, a study co-author and a professor of psychology at Ohio State University. 

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Marijuana's Active Ingredient May Slow Progression Of Alzheimer's Disease
Posted on 2006-10-18 12:43:05 in Medical Marijuana |
Scientists are reporting discovery in laboratory experiments of a previously unknown molecular mechanism in which the active ingredient in marijuana may slow the progression of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Scripps Research Institute's Kim D. Janda and colleagues used laboratory experiments to show that delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) preserves brain levels of the key neurotransmitter acetylcholine.

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Smoking Marijuana Could Prevent Alzheimer's
Posted on 2006-10-10 09:08:13 in Medical Marijuana |
A recent study conducted by scientists at the Scripps Research Institute in California has found smoking marijuana may stave off Alzheimer's disease. The experts say the active ingredient in the substance could prevent the disease by retaining the level of a neurotransmitter that is essential in the operation of the brain. Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, preserves the neurotransmitter acetylcholine better than current drugs which are administered to patients in hospitals. THC blocks clumps of protein blamed for damaging cognition and memory among patients of Alzheimer's.

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Dr. Robert Melamede, an associate professor at the University of Colorado, testified in court to the anti-aging effects of marijuana. Melamede also stated after his testimony:
“You can look at the harm caused by free radicals as biological friction or biological rust and the endocannabinoid system minimizes the impact of that and directly acts as an antioxidant as well as modifying the biochemistry in a way that minimizes the impacts,”
“I’m saying what science has now shown is that marijuana and cannabinoids are effective anti-aging agents which means that they are effective in minimizing the onset and the severity of age-related illnesses which include cognitive dysfunction things like Alzheimers, cardiovascular disease be it heart attacks, strokes, or clogged arteries.”

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There have been a few indications on the link between marijuana and anti-aging.  In 2005 it was reported that marijuana use in rats was shown to decrease the propensity to get Alzheimer disease.

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Does Marijuana have anti-aging properties


Does marijuana have anti-aging properties?  Well according to the family of the recently deceased Fulla Nayak, she claimed it did. Fulla Nayak who passed away at the age of 125 claimed that smoking cannabis daily was her secret to a long and healthy life. 
So does marijuana actually have anti-aging properties? It appears there is some very good indicators that is does. Yet where are the extensive studies? In 2009 a study was launched for Rapamycin a compound found in the soil Easter Island which was shown to possibly reduce the risk of cancer and heart disease. Yet Rapamycin has a very dangerous side effect of suppressing the bodies immune system.
Now marijuana has both cancer and heart disease reduction, plus the cognitive advantages of “oiling” the aging brain and preventing Alzheimer and other forms of dementia with no known negative side effects, yet once again there is no fanfare or research money for marijuana. I guess that comes with the stigma of having the nickname of “pot”.
The cannabinoids are found to have particular application as neuroprotectants, for example in limiting neurological damage following ischemic insults, such as stroke and trauma, or in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease and HIV dementia.
The more research they do, the more evidence Ohio State University scientists find that specific elements of marijuana can be good for the aging brain by reducing inflammation there and possibly even stimulating the formation of new brain cells.

The research suggests that the development of a legal drug that contains certain properties similar to those in marijuana might help prevent or delay the onset of Alzheimer's disease. Though the exact cause of Alzheimer's remains unknown, chronic inflammation in the brain is believed to contribute to memory impairment.

Any new drug's properties would resemble those of tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, the main psychoactive substance in the cannabis plant, but would not share its high-producing effects. THC joins nicotine, alcohol and caffeine as agents that, in moderation, have shown some protection against inflammation in the brain that might translate to better memory late in life.

"It's not that everything immoral is good for the brain. It's just that there are some substances that millions of people for thousands of years have used in billions of doses, and we're noticing there's a little signal above all the noise," said Gary Wenk, professor of psychology at Ohio State and principal investigator on the research.

Wenk's work has already shown that a THC-like synthetic drug can improve memory in animals. Now his team is trying to find out exactly how it works in the brain.

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The most recent research on rats indicates that at least three receptors in the brain are activated by the synthetic drug, which is similar to marijuana. These receptors are proteins within the brain's endocannabinoid system, which is involved in memory as well as physiological processes associated with appetite, mood and pain response.
This research is also showing that receptors in this system can influence brain inflammation and the production of new neurons, or brain cells.

"When we're young, we reproduce neurons and our memory works fine. When we age, the process slows down, so we have a decrease in new cell formation in normal aging. You need those cells to come back and help form new memories, and we found that this THC-like agent can influence creation of those cells," said Yannick Marchalant, a study coauthor and research assistant professor of psychology at Ohio State.

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Marchalant described the research in a poster presentation Wednesday (11/19) at the Society for Neuroscience meeting in Washington, D.C.

Knowing exactly how any of these compounds work in the brain can make it easier for drug designers to target specific systems with agents that will offer the most effective anti-aging benefits, said Wenk, who is also a professor of neuroscience and molecular virology, immunology and medical genetics.

"Could people smoke marijuana to prevent Alzheimer's disease if the disease is in their family? We're not saying that, but it might actually work. What we are saying is it appears that a safe, legal substance that mimics those important properties of marijuana can work on receptors in the brain to prevent memory impairments in aging. So that's really hopeful," Wenk said.

One thing is clear from the studies: Once memory impairment is evident, the treatment is not effective. Reducing inflammation and preserving or generating neurons must occur before the memory loss is obvious, Wenk said.

Marchalant led a study on old rats using the synthetic drug, called WIN-55212-2 (WIN), which is not used in humans because of its high potency to induce psychoactive effects.

The researchers used a pump under the skin to give the rats a constant dose of WIN for three weeks – a dose low enough to induce no psychoactive effects on the animals. A control group of rats received no intervention. In follow-up memory tests, in which rats were placed in a small swimming pool to determine how well they use visual cues to find a platform hidden under the surface of the water, the treated rats did better than the control rats in learning and remembering how to find the hidden platform.

"Old rats are not very good at that task. They can learn, but it takes them more time to find the platform. When we gave them the drug, it made them a little better at that task," Marchalant said.

In some rats, Marchalant combined the WIN with compounds that are known to block specific receptors, which then offers hints at which receptors WIN is activating. The results indicated the WIN lowered the rats' brain inflammation in the hippocampus by acting on what is called the TRPV1 receptor. The hippocampus is responsible for short-term memory.

With the same intervention technique, the researchers also determined that WIN acts on receptors known as CB1 and CB2, leading to the generation of new brain cells – a process known as neurogenesis. Those results led the scientists to speculate that the combination of lowered inflammation and neurogenesis is the reason the rats' memory improved after treatment with WIN.

The researchers are continuing to study the endocannabinoid system's role in regulating inflammation and neuron development. They are trying to zero in on the receptors that must be activated to produce the most benefits from any newly developed drug.

 

What they already know is THC alone isn't the answer.

 

"The end goal is not to recommend the use of THC in humans to reduce Alzheimer's," Marchalant said. "We need to find exactly which receptors are most crucial, and ideally lead to the development of drugs that specifically activate those receptors. We hope a compound can be found that can target both inflammation and neurogenesis, which would be the most efficient way to produce the best effects."

The National Institutes of Health supported this work.

...................................................................................................................


San Francisco Medical Marijuana Doctor Says Cannabis Offers Numerous Benefits Beyond Treating Symptoms


Medical marijuana has numerous benefits in addition to treating symptoms, according to Dr. Arif Khan, Medical Director of Greenway Medical Marijuana Physicians in downtown San Francisco. The correct marijuana strain can increase concentration, boost physical performance, and benefit patients’ overall internal physical health.
Greenway Medical Marijuana Physicians Evaluations is located in downtown San Francisco.
Cannabis is a complex medication with a spectrum of benefits.
San Francisco, CA (Vocus/PRWEB) January 22, 2011
Greenway Medical Marijuana Doctors advise that in addition to treating symptoms, medical cannabis helps patients focus; increases productivity, creativity, and awareness; can boost physical performance during exercise; and has anti-aging, anti-inflammatory, cardio- and neuro-protective properties.
“Cannabis is a complex medication with a spectrum of benefits.” said Dr. Arif Khan. “Safe therapeutic use requires selecting strains (Indica v. Sativa) and moderating dosage to address each patient’s medical condition.”
Many patients are unaware that cannabis enhances their lives as well as controls the symptoms of their illnesses. Taken properly, cannabis helps them focus, plus increases their productivity, creativity, and awareness. Patients often find that their social interactions are more meaningful with cannabis: it makes people pleasant and adds to one's emotional intelligence.
Some of Greenway’s patients also find that their physical output during a workout or exercise session is greatly augmented by cannabis. The amazing effect of a well-chosen Sativa (one that energizes in a good way without being "trippy") increases endurance and physical performance.
Of course, the underlying anti-aging, anti-inflammatory, cardio- and neuro-protective properties of cannabis (in particular, the high Cannabidiol or CBD strains) are, in Greenway’s opinion, likely to add happy, fulfilling years to many people’s lifespan.


Though they will not reschedule it,  the U.  S.  Government has taken a patent out on it.


U.S. patent #6,630,507, entitled Cannabinoids as antioxidants and neuroprotectants.  Filed in 2001, this patent, which was subsequently granted in 2003,  gives us an insight into the canny duplicity that has characterized U.S. government policy toward marijuana.  In the patent, assigned to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), the applicants state the following:  "Cannabinoids have been found to have antioxidant properties, unrelated to NMDA receptor antagonism.  This new found property makes cannabinoids useful in the treatment and prophylaxis of wide variety of oxidation associated diseases, such as ischemic, age-related, inflammatory and autoimmune diseases.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q9xOvn3oIRI

 


Studies on Medical Marijuana and Aging


ANTIOXIDANT
                              http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC20965/

                                                 http://amjpathol.highwire.org/cgi/reprint/163/5/1997

    ANTI-INFLAMMATORY
                              http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2189767/

                              http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3034694/

                              http://jcp.sagepub.com/content/42/11_suppl/11S.short
                              http://www.springerlink.com/content/685cp8r96yxr1g5p/
CARDIOVASCULAR DISEASE
                              http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2697769/

Marijuana and Cannabidiol (CBD) Videos:

    GW Pharmaceuticals
                         http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E_LfsN7zdr4

    Breast Cancer
                          http://www.youtube.com/
                          watch?v=FNerRVJklsg&feature=player_embedded

    Cannabinoids
                         http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZI2VT2kOfnM

    Endocannabinoids
                         http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qp633lcU9F8&feature=related
                         http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vkNtR1vYakg&feature=related

    Cannabinoid Science
                          http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xhwt3w_medical-
                          marijuana-the-science_tech

    Anti-tumor properties of Cannabinoids
                          http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xhwt65_anti-tumor-
                          properties-of-cannabinoids_tech

    Cannabinoids as Neuroprotectant
                         http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rdjBTkuzQBs
                         ------------------------------------------

    Cannabinoids in Alzheimer's
                         http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MTzDpf_aRVE


Marijuana Medical Research

    CANCER
                              http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2806496/

                                                          http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20053780
                                                          -------------------------------------------
                              http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16728591*
                              --------------------------------------------
                                                          http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21566064
                                                          -------------------------------------------
                               http://www.ukcia.org/research/AntineoplasticActivityOfCannabinoids/
                               index.php
                                                          http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18833429
                                                          -------------------------------------------
                              http://jpet.aspetjournals.org/content/318/3/1375.abstract
                              http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1038/sj.bjp.0706134/full
    ALZHEIMER'S DISEASE
                                                          http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15030397
                                                          -------------------------------------------
                                                          http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18833429
                                                          -------------------------------------------
                                                          http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21350020
                                                          -------------------------------------------
                              http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2190031/

    PARKINSON'S DISEASE
                                                          http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18801821
                                                          -------------------------------------------
                                                           http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/3793381
                                                           ------------------------------------------
                                                          http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18833429
                                                          -------------------------------------------
                              http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0006322306010663
                               http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/
                               j.1471-4159.2003.02327.x/full
                              http://jop.sagepub.com/content/23/8/979.short
    DIABETES
                              http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2925907/

                              http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2228254/

                              http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2270485/

                                                          http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18035205
                                                          -------------------------------------------
                              http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2955420/

                                                          http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18035205
                                                          -------------------------------------------
                              http://ajpheart.physiology.org/content/293/1/H610.short
    ARTHRITIS
                                                          http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18833429
                                                          -------------------------------------------
                              http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC16904/

                              http://www.pnas.org/content/97/17/9561.short
  

 

 

 

         

 

 

 

 

 

 


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Like This Article  

 
kloneking  (20 posts)
Friday, Dec 28 2012 at 10:18p
 
another winner Jan
 
Dee Mann
Thursday, Feb 14 2013 at 6:40a
 
Very difficult to travel when you have Multiple Sclerosis. They make it SO difficult you just give up. Connecticut Doctors will not even speak about it as a medicine. Everyone is brain washed and the Government CONTROLS everything. People like me have no chance here in Connecticut....SAD.
 
krob33037
Thursday, Apr 4 2013 at 3:39p
 
Wow that is one of the best pages I have ever read on the uses of medical marijuana it really opened my eyes to the possibilities we open up when we smoke weed
 
PapaGanja  (14 posts)
Friday, Apr 4 at 12:12p
 
Excellent post! Thank you for taking the time to put this together. Here's to growing old gracefully, healthily, and most important happily! Woohoo.
 
ericamartins
Saturday, Jun 14 at 8:14a
 
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medicalmarijuanacenter  (95 posts)
Tuesday, Jul 22 at 8:31a
 

Another great post! Medical marijuana can help relieve the symptoms of a variety of illness without much side effects that comes with old age especially. It is known for relieving problems like migraines, arthritis, chronic pain etc. Studies reveal that senior citizens are relying more on medical marijuana to lead a stress free life.

 
moses  (9 posts)
Wednesday, Sep 3 at 6:35p
 
And I thought I had a super genetic make up, turns out the plant had something to do with it