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New Study Proves Cannabis Alleviates Cocaine Addiction

Posted by Jason Draizin on 07/27/2011 in Medical Marijuana Research

It’s long been common knowledge that marijuana is effective for fighting drug addictions, despite erroneous claims that marijuana itself is addictive. And Time magazine reports that a new study actually proves the effectiveness of cannabis and addiction, and may pave the way as the new addiction therapy medicine.


This new study, which was published in the July 2011 issue of Nature Neuroscience, found that a synthetic form of CBD (the second most prevalent cannabinoid in marijuana) reduced cocaine use in mice by 50-60% -- a number that Zheng-Xiong Xi, the lead author of the study and a researcher at the National Institute on Drug Abuse, said was "a very significant reduction.”


CBD is a non-psychoctive component of marijuana, which means it is not intoxicating. It is believed that the presence of CBD (cannabidiol) in cannabis may moderate the euphoric effects of THC. CBD has anti-inflammatory, anti-biotic, anti-depressant, anti-psychotic, anti-oxidant, sedative, and immunomodulatory properties, and appears to relieve convulsions, inflammation, anxiety, and nausea. And according to this new study, it also helps alleviate cocaine addiction by turning down the receptor in the brain that is stimulated by cocaine.


The scientists in this study used a synthetic version of cannabidiol called JWH-133. Their discoveries may lead to the development of new drugs for cocaine and crack addicts using this compound, or even the pure natural form of CBD. These new drugs would help addicts fight cravings, help them detox, and lessen withdrawal symptoms.


But the possibility of a new, effective anti-addiction drug isn’t the only benefit to come from this study. These findings suggest that contrary to what anti-pot people have been spewing for decades, marijuana is not a gateway drug. In fact, it’s the exact opposite. It’s an “exit” drug that can help people suffering from addictions turn away from drugs altogether.