October 6th, 2006, 08:19 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Cave Creek
Alzheimer's and Pot... what was I saying?
This is ironic, since as any aging hippy knows, a major effect of pot use is to wipe out your very short term memory and it makes people apathetic, both problems in Alzheimer's. And since none of the 'commercially marketed drugs' really do squat, being equal or better to them doesn't mean a lot.
Marijuana May Stave Off Alzheimer's, Study Claims
By Andy Sullivan, Reuters
WASHINGTON (Oct. 5) - Good news for aging hippies: smoking pot may stave off Alzheimer's disease.
New research shows that the active ingredient in marijuana may prevent the progression of the disease by preserving levels of an important neurotransmitter that allows the brain to function.
Researchers at the Scripps Research Institute in California found that marijuana's active ingredient, delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, can prevent the neurotransmitter acetylcholine from breaking down more effectively than commercially marketed drugs.
THC is also more effective at blocking clumps of protein that can inhibit memory and cognition in Alzheimer's patients, the researchers reported in the journal Molecular Pharmaceutics.
The researchers said their discovery could lead to more effective drug treatment for Alzheimer's, the leading cause of dementia among the elderly.
Those afflicted with Alzheimer's suffer from memory loss, impaired decision-making, and diminished language and movement skills. The ultimate cause of the disease is unknown, though it is believed to be hereditary.
Marijuana is used to relieve glaucoma and can help reduce side effects from cancer and AIDS treatment.
Possessing marijuana for recreational use is illegal in many parts of the world, including the United States, though some states allow possession for medical purposes.
Put this together with recent research that strongly suggests red wine has similar benefits -- dissolves cerebral amyloid plaque in particular -- all they need to do is show that chocolate or ice cream prevents Alzheimer's and we're set.
btw, the research indicates most cases of Alzheimer's don't have a heavy genetic load, but early-onset type (before age 65) or if you have a lot of relatives with it, does increase your genetic risk.
"The power of the State looks real different when you're on the other side of the bayonet." Chris Hayes