Publication Abstract Display
Type: Published Manuscript
Title: Neurocognitive performance of methamphetamine users discordant for history of marijuana exposure.
Authors: Gonzalez R, Rippeth JD, Carey CL, Heaton RK, Moore DJ, Schweinsburg BC, Cherner M, Grant I
Contact: HIV Neurobehavioral Research Center, University of California, San Diego, 150 W. Washington Street, 2nd Floor, San Diego, CA 92103, USA.
Year: 2004
Publication: Drug and Alcohol Dependence
Volume: 76 Issue: 2 Pages: 181-90
Abstract:Abuse of the stimulant drug methamphetamine is associated with neural injury and neuropsychological (NP) deficits, while the residual effects of marijuana use remain uncertain. We sought to determine if methamphetamine dependent persons who also met criteria for marijuana abuse or dependence evidenced different NP performance than those with dependence for methamphetamine alone. We examined three groups that did not differ significantly on important demographic factors: (1) subjects with a history of methamphetamine dependence and history of marijuana abuse/dependence (METH+/MJ+, n=27); (2) methamphetamine dependent subjects without history of marijuana abuse/dependence (METH+/MJ-, n=26); (3) a control group with minimal or no drug use (n=41). A comprehensive NP battery was administered and performance was quantified for five cognitive ability areas. The METH+/MJ- group generally demonstrated the greatest NP impairment, with statistically significant differences observed between the METH+/MJ- and control group in learning, retention/retrieval, and a summary score of global NP performance. The METH+/MJ+ group did not differ significantly from the control or METH+/MJ- group on any NP ability. However, there was a significant linear trend in the global NP score suggesting that the METH+/MJ+ performed intermediate to the control and METH+/MJ- groups. Based on these findings, we cannot conclude that there is a protective effect of marijuana use in methamphetamine users; however, marijuana use clearly did not appear to exacerbate methamphetamine neurotoxicity. Further investigations are needed to determine if the emerging literature, suggesting that certain cannabinoids might have neuroprotective actions, is generalizable to community-dwelling substance abusers.
Funding: NIMH:MH MH 62512, NIDA:DA P01DA12065
Keywords: Adult, Amphetamine-Related Disorders, Brain, Cannabinoids, Cognition, Comorbidity, Comparative Study, Drug Interactions, Female, Humans, Male, Marijuana Abuse, Methamphetamine, Middle Aged, Neuropsychological Tests, Neurotoxicity Syndromes, Psychometrics, Research Support, U.S. Gov''t, P.H.S.

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