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EPA-1690 – Cannabis Use is Associated with Biological Markers of Ageing in Healthy Volunteers

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  15 April 2020

L. Scoriels
Affiliation:
Psychiatry, Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ), Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
S. Theegala
Affiliation:
Psychiatry, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, United Kingdom
M. Giro
Affiliation:
Mental Health, Universitària Parc Tauli de Sabadell, Barcelona, Spain
S. Ozanne
Affiliation:
Metabolic Research Laboratories, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, United Kingdom
K. Burling
Affiliation:
Clinical Biochemistry, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, United Kingdom
P.B. Jones
Affiliation:
Psychiatry, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, United Kingdom
E. Fernandez-Egea
Affiliation:
Psychiatry, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, United Kingdom
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Abstract

Introduction

Cannabis is a widely used drug, which effects on human health remain controversial. Recent studies have found correlations between cannabis use and brain structural changes that may be related to ageing processes. Eotaxin-1 is a chemokine described as a marker of ageing, which also appear to increase with cognitive deficits and neurogenesis. Here, we aimed at characterising the effect of cannabis in accelerating normal ageing processes, by studying eotaxin-1 plasma levels in people who currently use cannabis, have used cannabis in the past, or have never used cannabis.

Methods

A total of 87 healthy volunteers participated in the study. Participants completed the Cannabis Experience Questionnaire, the General Practice Physical Activity Questionnaire, the Sociodemographic, Morphometric, Alcohol and Tobacco Questionnaire, and provided a blood sample. Eotaxin-1 was assessed by ELISA. The three groups were compared using one-way ANOVA to assess levels of eotaxin-1, and nonpaired Student t-tests to assess other factors effects.

Results

Current users of cannabis (n=18) had significantly higher eotaxin-1 plasma levels compared to past users of cannabis (n=33) and individuals who never used cannabis (n=36). The latter two groups had similar eotaxin-1 levels. Higher eotaxin-1 plasma levels were not attributed to gender, age, body mass index, physical activity or use of other legal/illegal drugs.

Conclusion

These results suggest that cannabis use increases eotaxin-1 plasma levels and could result in accelerated brain ageing. However, the effects appear to be reversible when cannabis use ceases. These findings have important implications for treatment and care of mental health disorders, such as schizophrenia.

Type
P01 - Addictive Behaviours
Copyright
Copyright © European Psychiatric Association 2014

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