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Cannabichromene In Marijuana Helps Brain Grow, Study Shows
TruthOnPot.com – Contrary to popular belief, the brain doesn’t stop growing after reaching a certain age. In fact, brain cells are constantly being generated in adults through a process called neurogenesis.
Now groundbreaking research from Italy shows that a fairly unknown chemical in marijuana called cannabichromene (CBC) could help with this process. Published last week in the journal Neurochemistry International, the authors wrote:
“In conclusion, CBC may exert potential actions on brain health through effects on adult neural stem cells.”
Specifically, cannabichromene appeared to increase the viability of developing brain cells – known to scientists as adult neural stem progenitor cells (NSPC).
In adults, neurogenesis occurs in a specific area of the brain important for memory and learning: The hippocampus. Previous studies show that the brain is capable of producing over 5,000 new cells each day, although this number seems to decline with age.
As the authors of the new study explain, stem cells involved with neurogenesis are an “essential component of brain function in health” and a decline in their growth is thought to contribute to a variety of disorders, including depression and Alzheimer’s disease.
Interestingly, earlier studies show a similar effect of CBD and THC on the growth of these brain cells.
Dr. Xia Jiang of the University of Saskatchewan led one of the first studies on THC and neurogenesis. She summarized the findings of her 2005 study in an interview with Science Daily:
“Most ‘drugs of abuse’ suppress neurogenesis. Only marijuana promotes neurogenesis.”
Although the current study was conducted using stem cells derived from rats, the authors hope that future studies involving marijuana preparations will provide stronger evidence for “the potential benefit of the future clinical use of these herbal products in the treatment of neurological diseases or injuries through the regulation of adult neurogenesis.”
The study was published ahead of print and funded by a research grant from GW Pharmaceuticals.