Categories: CannabisGeneral News

Is Cannabis Abuse Disorder Acquired Genetically?

A new study suggests that there is a specific gene in the human body that has a direct link with cannabis abuse. The risk factor gene acts as a pseudoreceptor for nicotine in the brain. People having a minute quantity of the receptor are at greater risk of becoming a victim of cannabis abuse — scientists from the Danish psychiatric project conducted this study.

They found out that cannabis abuse, formally known as Cannabis Use Disorder, has a connection with a specific variant. That variant has a direct influence on the production rate of a specific nicotine receptor in the human brain. The article appears online in the journal called Nature Neuroscience.

How did the scientists extract the results?

Consumers of the type of cannabis containing THC become dependent on the substance with a ratio of 1 to 10. Ten were the total number of cannabis consumers. People have been using this drug the most frequently based on its psychoactive component present in it.

The disorder follows an association with a specific genetic component. The twin inheritance estimate is between 51 to 70 percent. Scientists studied 2387 cases and a control group of 48,985 individuals. The replication was studied among 5,501 cases. The control group here constituted of 301,041 individuals. They conclude a risk locus for the disorder on a genomic basis that replicated in the community.

What do the results interpret?

The specific gene rs56372821 is a potent expression for the trait that has an association with cannabis abuse among individuals. The combined analysis manifested that there was a noticeable decline in the cannabis use disorder that affected the cognitive functioning in individuals abusing cannabis that contained the psychoactive compound THC.

Consequently, the final results showed an in-depth physiological mechanism. It also hints details on the genomic map of the cannabis use disorder.

The specific gene influence the formation process of the certain receptor of nicotine in the human body. Moreover, Individuals having a less amount of this receptor in their bodies are at significantly greater risk of developing the disorder.

Scientists conducted the study in Denmark. It was cohort-based research to figure out the genomic map of around two thousand cannabis abusers and fifty thousand non-abusers of the substance. Furthermore, the scientists double-checked their results and studied another 5,500 cases and around three hundred thousand non-abusers.

Not only this, but the scientists in the study also analyzed the data from genetic studies that showed the genetic factors involved in the cognitive functions in cannabis users. For instance, these functions included their concentration and memory.

Extensive link of genetic variants

At that point, they found that those having dysfunctional cognitive factors also had some specific genetic variants in their bodies. Moreover, they were also at risk of developing the abuse disorder. In addition, the three factors are inter-linked with one another. Furthermore, the research is one of a kind that provides a genetic framework for better understanding of the etiology of addictive behavior among individuals.

However, there is a need to further research on the genetic differences in individuals to extract precise information out of these researches.

Megan Stevens

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