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Anandamide is a ligand of the endocannabinoid system. Animals show a depletion following repeated Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) administration but the effect of cannabis use on central nervous system levels of endocannabinoids has not been previously examined in humans. Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) levels of the endocannabinoids anandamide, 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG) and related lipids were tested in 33 volunteers (20 cannabis users). Lower levels of CSF anandamide and higher levels of 2-AG in serum were observed in frequent compared with infrequent cannabis users. Levels of CSF anandamide were negatively correlated with persisting psychotic symptoms when drug-free. Higher levels of anandamide are associated with a lower risk of psychotic symptoms following cannabis use.


School of Psychology

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Journal Article

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