Cannabis Use Does Shrink parts of the Brain…in Some People

Thursday, 24 January 2019

“The brain is obviously affected by cannabis, detrimentally for some. The hippocampus in particular may be especially sensitive to the impact of heavy cannabis use, given its high concentration of cannabinoid receptors type1. But does regular use change the size of the hippocampus? Apparently in those with a genetic predisposition.”
- Dr. David Hepburn


Cannabis use and dopaminergic gene polymorphism had both distinct and interactive effects on the hippocampus.

Emergingalterations of hippocampal total and specific subregional volumes were found in cannabis users relative to controls (i.e., CA1, CA2/3, and CA4), and associations between cannabis use levels and total and specific subregional volumes.

Furthermore, total hippocampal volume and the fissure subregion were affected by cannabis×DAT1 polymorphism (i.e., 9/9R and in 10/10R alleles), reflecting high and low levels of dopamine availability.

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